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GUNS N ROSES - GREATEST HITS - UNIVERSAL MUSIC
Record Rating: *****

Guns N Roses - Greatest Hits It may surprise some to realize that Guns N’ Roses released only four full-length original albums, and two of those debuted simultaneously. But they were enough to forever change rock ‘n’ roll. Even more shocking is that one of the great bands in rock history, with its last studio album issued more than 12 years ago, has never had a ‘best of" compilation. Now it has. Welcome to the jungle folks, for the official Guns N’ Roses Greatest Hits compilation hit the music stores this month.

If you're a casual fan of Guns N Roses, and you're just looking for all of the big hits in one place, this compilation should do it for you - for most of the songs you've come to know and love can be found here. Formed in the mid-'80s from the ashes of various Hollywood bands, the original line-up included front man Axl Rose, guitarists Slash and Izzy Stradlin, bassist Michael "Duff" McKagan and drummer Steven Adler. The group's first full-length album, Appetite For Destruction, was released in 1987. It took a year for the record to reach Billboard's No. 1 slot, but after that, there was no stopping it. And the rest as they say is history.

With all the classics here in one place for the first time ever - Welcome to the Jungle, Sweet Child O' Mine, Patience, Paradise City, Don't Cry and their magnificent opus of all opuses November Rain - for the younger and newer fans this is a good introduction to one of the coolest rock bands that ever rocked. But for the hardcore Guns N’ Roses fan – this compilation does falls a few roses short of a bouquet. The collection does deliver what it promises - but it still left me feeling like I wanted a collection of their best and not necessarily their greatest hits.

Many singles and great songs that hardcore fans know and love - for example the beautiful and haunting Estranged from Use Your Illusions is no where to be found on this set – even though it was a major top ten hit! The new compilation also marks the debut on a Guns N’ Roses album of the bands cover of the Rolling Stones’ Sympathy For The Devil which Axl and Slash did for the 1995 film Interview With The Vampire. But clocking in with a mere 14 tracks and 79 minutes – is without a doubt, a flawed compilation. And even the packaging is weak (for there are no liner notes to speak of) - but the upshot is that this does contain a hell of a lot of great music. It just doesn’t get any better than this. Highly recommended.

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