Chinese Democracy took 13 years to record.
Duke Nukem Forever took 15 years to develop.
Chinese Democracy saw the entire band leave to form Velvet Revolver, which broke up and reunited.
Duke Nukem Forever saw its development team laid off when the original company went out of business.
Chinese Democracy started work when Napster was legal.
Duke Nukem Forever started work before Playstation, Xbox, or Wii even existed.
Chinese Democracy doesn’t sound like Guns N’ Roses.
Duke Nukem Forever still sounds like Duke Nukem.
Chinese Democracy doesn’t sound like an album that took 13 years to record.
Duke Nukem Forever looks like it was developed in 1996 in places.
So which one is better?
Axl Rose whines a lot. Duke Nukem has balls of steel.
Tom Scholz, the technophobic central member of Boston, has been known to take years to record albums other arena rock bands might have produced in three months. Was it worth the wait between Don’t Look Back and Third Stage? Well, let’s put it this way. I was a sixth grader into disco for Don’t and a recent high school grad in the throes of a mad Deep Purple addiction when Third appeared. So to ask whether it was worth the wait implies that I was waiting. I wasn’t.
I can’t say the same for Guns N Roses’ (really Axl Rose’s solo) release Chinese Democracy. Since Use Your Illusion came out in 1991, Metallica has usurped GNR’s hard rock throne, grunge has come and gone, as have three American presidents, and MTV no longer shows videos. To top that, the actual band Guns N Roses calls itself Velvet Revolver and is on its second lead singer. That’s right. Axl has taken so long to record this album that Velvet Revolver’s Scott Weiland has had time to start a career, quit his band, join the former GNR members, quit that band, and reform Stone Temple Pilots.
So, after hearing the new single 15 years after The Spaghetti Incident, do I think it was worth the wait?
Over the weekend, I learned that Chinese Democracy, the Guns N’ Roses album that took 10 years and $13 million to make, features no Guns and only Axl Rose, will finally be released on November 23.
Best Buy and iTunes do not have pre-orders up yet.
In the meantime, the rest of Guns N’ Roses has become Velvet Revolver, released two albums and is on their second lead singer.