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For the Chinese political movement, see Chinese democracy movement. For the song, see Chinese Democracy (song).
Chinese Democracy cover
Studio album by Guns N' Roses
Released November 23, 2008
Battery Soundtrack, Bennett House, Can Am, Capitol, Cherokee, Electric Lady, IGA, The Palms, Rumbo, Sunset Sound, The Townhouse, The Village, Woodland Ranch
Genre Hard rock
Producer Axl Rose, Caram Costanzo
* Allmusic 4/5 stars link
* The A.V. Club (A-) link
* Entertainment Weekly (B-) link
* The Guardian 3/5 stars link
* Pitchfork Media (5.8/10) link
* PopMatters (6/10) link
* Rolling Stone 4/5 stars link
* Uncut 2/5 stars link
Guns N' Roses chronology
"The Spaghetti Incident?"
(1993) Chinese Democracy
Singles from Chinese Democracy
1. "Chinese Democracy"
Released: October 22, 2008
Released: November 17, 2008
Chinese Democracy is the sixth studio album by American rock band Guns N' Roses. It was released on November 23, 2008, worldwide and in the United Kingdom on November 24, 2008. It is the band's first studio album since 1993's "The Spaghetti Incident?", and their first album of original studio material since the simultaneous release of Use Your Illusion I and II in September 1991. Retail store chain Best Buy is the exclusive retailer of the album in the United States.
In a 2007 interview, Axl Rose's close friend Sebastian Bach stated that Chinese Democracy will be the first installment in a trilogy of new albums. Bach also remarked that Rose had told him the third, as yet untitled, album has been slated for 2012.
* 1 Background
* 2 Production
o 2.1 Collaborations with other artists
o 2.2 Sound
* 3 Delays
* 4 Controversy and lawsuits
o 4.1 Title conflict with The Offspring
o 4.2 Greatest Hits release
o 4.3 Dr Pepper promotion
o 4.4 Censorship in the People's Republic of China
* 5 Release and reception
* 6 Track listing
* 7 Personnel
* 8 Chart positions
o 8.1 Album
o 8.2 Singles
* 9 External links
* 10 References
Main article: History of Chinese Democracy
See also: Chinese Democracy Tour
Guns N' Roses began to write and record new music in 1994. Ex-bassist Duff McKagan is quoted as saying, "[the] band was so splintered at that point that nothing got started". Slash has criticized Rose for making the band seem "like a dictatorship". Slash quit the band in 1996; drummer Matt Sorum and McKagan left soon afterwards. Slash was replaced by Nine Inch Nails touring guitarist Robin Finck, ex-Replacements bassist Tommy Stinson replaced McKagan, and Josh Freese joined as the drummer. In early 1998, the band — which comprised Rose, Finck, Stinson and Freese along with long-time Guns N' Roses associate Paul Tobias, keyboardists Dizzy Reed and Chris Pitman — began recording at Rumbo Recorders, a state-of-the-art studio in the San Fernando Valley where Guns N' Roses had partially recorded parts for their debut album, Appetite for Destruction. During this time, Geffen paid Rose $1 million to try to finish the album, with a further $1 million if he handed it in to them by March 1, 1999.
In 2000, Rose hired avant-garde metal guitarist Buckethead, and drummer Bryan "Brain" Mantia to replace the departed Freese. Later on in 2000, Finck rejoined the band as the third guitarist. On January 1, 2001, Guns N' Roses played their first concert in over seven years at the House of Blues in Las Vegas, Nevada. This was followed by their headlining performance at Rock in Rio III on January 14, 2001 in front of 190,000 people. On August 29, 2002, the band made a surprise visit to the MTV Video Music Awards, playing old songs along with a new "Madagascar" to an ecstatic New York crowd.
Guns N' Roses on the Chinese Democracy Tour in 2007.
On December 14, 2006, Rose published an open letter to the band's fans on their website, claiming that remaining tour's shows were taking up time the band needed to finish recording Chinese Democracy. Rose also revealed that the band had parted company with their manager Merck Mercuriadis, implying that the reason the album was not released in 2006 was Mercuriadis's fault (many times throughout 2006, Rose had said the album would be released that year). In the letter, Rose announced a tentative release date of March 6, 2007 for the album, however, the album was once again delayed.
On February 22, 2007, the band's road manager, Del James, announced that all recording for the album had been completed and it was in the mixing process, James stated that there was no release date for the album but that things appeared to be moving on after a number of delays.
On September 14, 2008, "Shackler's Revenge" was released on the music video game Rock Band 2, making it the band's first official release of new material since 1999's "Oh My God". "Shackler's Revenge" was shortly followed by another release, "If the World", which, according to Rolling Stone, plays during the closing credits of Body of Lies. A firm release date was announced by Billboard in October, 2008, set for November 23rd. In the US, the retail release will be sold exclusively through Best Buy. The first single from the album, "Chinese Democracy", was released on October 22, 2008.
Long time Guns N' Roses producer Mike Clink was reported to have worked on the album during its conception. Moby and Youth turned down offers to work on the album. According to Rolling Stone, engineer Andy Wallace, who had worked on Nirvana's Nevermind, was working on the album in 2006. A source close to Guns N' Roses is quoted as saying "we're absolutely delighted with the mixes". Other producers who have worked on the album include Roy Thomas Baker, Bob Ezrin and Sean Beavan.
Sebastian Bach performs backing vocals on "Sorry"
Collaborations with other artists
The band has worked with numerous other artists during Chinese Democracy's recording process; including guitarists Brian May and Dave Navarro. May recorded the lead guitar parts for the leaked song "Catcher In the Rye" in 1999, however, May is not credited in the finished album.
Composers Marco Beltrami and Paul Buckmaster worked on orchestral arrangements for the album in the early 2000s. In January 2007, former Skid Row frontman Sebastian Bach recorded backing vocals for a song called "Sorry" at Electric Lady Studios. Harpist Patti Hood has also recorded parts for the album.
See also: History of Chinese Democracy#Leaks
In 1999, the industrial metal song "Oh My God" was released on the End of Days soundtrack. It featured current Guns N' Roses members Axl Rose, Dizzy Reed, Robin Finck, Chris Pitman, and Tommy Stinson, along with former members Paul Tobias and Josh Freese. Dave Navarro and Gary Sunshine also recorded guitar parts for the song. "Oh My God" was unpopular upon its release and was described by Allmusic as "a less than satisfying comeback". The sound of Chinese Democracy was often reported to be industrial rock music similar to Nine Inch Nails and Ministry, a style of which Rose had long been a fan. However, in a 2001 interview with an Argentine radio station, Rose stated the album wasn't industrial, and would vary in styles:
“ It is not industrial, the closest thing to that was perhaps "Oh My God", but there are some songs that won't be on the album that were this way. There will be all kinds of styles, many influences as blues, mixed in the songs. ”
Sample of "Chinese Democracy" from Chinese Democracy. "Chinese Democracy" was the first single released by Guns N' Roses since 1999.
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In 2003, DJ Eddie Trunk spoke about the demo of "I.R.S.", which was leaked on his radio show:
“ It reminded me of Use Your Illusion-era stuff, with some modern flairs to it. The song had a loop track in the beginning, but then, when it kicked in, it was that same dramatic Guns N' Roses hard rock. ”
During the launch party for Korn's 2006 tour, Rose conducted an interview with Rolling Stone and told the magazine:
“ It's a very complex record, I'm trying to do something different. Some of the arrangements are kind of like Queen. Some people are going to say, 'It doesn't sound like Axl Rose, it doesn't sound like Guns N' Roses.' But you'll like at least a few songs on there. ”
In a Rolling Stone article in 2006, former Skid Row frontman Sebastian Bach described the album as "epic" and "mind-blowing" and added:
“ It’s a very cool album - it’s badass with killer screams, killer guitar riffs, but it’s got a totally modern sound. The word for it is ‘grand.’ It’s fucking epic. He’s reinvented himself yet again. ”
Bach has also described the album as having "the rawness and the power of Appetite for Destruction, but it also has the grandiosity of 'November Rain'." He went on to describe the song "Sorry", which he sings backing vocals on:
“ There’s this one song called ‘Sorry’ that’s almost like doom metal with Axl singing really clean over this grinding, slow beat that is fucking mean, I cannot get it out of my head.