When Slash put out his first solo album – It’s Five O’clock Somewhere, under the name Slash’s Snakepit, in 1995 – he encouraged fans to ask, “What if?” about the music – “What if this were a Guns N’ Roses song?” “If I write something, my first and foremost priority would be to dedicate it to Guns,” he told Rolling Stone at the time. “Axl said, ‘That’s not the kind of music I want to do.’ I said, ‘OK,’ and I took it all back.” Now, after nearly 25 yearsf public tumult, the guitarist has improbably re-joined Guns N’ Roses and perhaps even more improbably, the first music that he’s releasing since the reunion is a solo record.
Although he and his bandmates in Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators were working on Living the Dream before Slash went back to GN’R, it’s still hard not to wonder, “What if?” – “What if he had presented these songs and worked on them with Axl Rose and Duff McKagan?” That’s because, in some ways, Living the Dream is a character study in Slash the guitarist. The music all bears his fingerprints – a biting blues filigree at the end of a riff, weeping solos full of long notes, boogie-woogie riffs. MORE