Guns N' Roses: Chinese Whispers
At the time of writing, U.S. rock DJ Eddie Trunk—one of the few people to have interviewed Axl Rose in recent years—has claimed that now the delay is coming from “not the band…but the label. There is so much money tied up in this record that in today’s business it will be virtually impossible [for it] to be profitable, meaning the label might want to sell it off but can not find a buyer since nobody buys CDs anymore. Problem might not be Axl this time around and [it] might keep this CD in limbo for more years to come.”
Beta Lebeis scoffs at the idea. “The album was finished before Christmas,” she says, “but everyone knows that. We’re in negotiations now with the record company.”
“Negotiations” could include the release date or something more novel. In an age that sees Radiohead giving albums away online, is it enough to launch an album like Chinese Democracy in the “traditional” manner? And even if they wanted to, does the album have the hit single it would need to get global airplay? “It’s a great GN’R record,” Zutaut contends, “but is there a hit single? Because without the hit, you can’t sell 20 million.”
Perhaps Chinese Democracy is a victim of its own excessive promises. Expectations for the album were running high long before Zutaut entered into its history, in 2001. Today, anything less than the second coming would disappoint all but the most die-hard Axl Rose devotees.
Perhaps Rose himself knows that is true. In a press release dated August 14, 2002, he offered some advice to fans anticipating the album’s release: “If you’re waiting…don’t. Live your life. That’s your responsibility not mine. If it were not to happen you won’t have missed a thing. If in fact it does you might get something that works for you—in the end you could win on this either way. But if you’re really into waiting, try holding your breath for Jesus ’cause I hear the payoff may be that much greater."
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Artists:Guns N' Roses
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