Jealous Haters Since 1998!
Home | News | Reviews | Day In Rock | RockNewsWire | Singled Out | Tour Dates/Tix | Feeds
Watch You Bleed: The Saga of Guns N' Roses (Rock Reads)

by Anthony Kuzminski

.
Stephan Davis made a name for himself by writing one of the most viral and controversial rock biographies of all time with Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga and later with the authorized Aerosmith biography, Walk This Way. In fact, his legacy exists from the publishing and controversy surrounding these books, so hopes were extremely high that he would deliver another tour de force tale of debauchery with Watch You Bleed: The Saga of Guns N' Roses. The book is epic at 448-pages so one would assume that this bio would be the definitive resource on this band; sadly it's not…not even close. While reading the book, I couldn't help but feel that Davis had an ax to grind with the members of Guns N' Roses. This pessimism blinded him and it ultimately hurts the final product and makes it a bargain basement buy only.

What Stephen Davis is able to succeed in is the definitive genesis story of Guns N' Roses. He managed to find several early interviews with the band from 1984 to 1986 which give the reader a first hand look at the chaos and confusion that surrounded their lives. Unlike many of the other books on GNR recently, he delves into the background of all five members and not just the key players. The early unpublished or forgotten stories from this period are what make the book desirable. No one has ever delved this deep into the infancy period of the band and anything and everything you wanted to know is here. However, this proves to be the book's Achilles' heel as it appears that Davis stopped researching events after 1987. The childhood stories, tales and interviews of this band are unprecedented, but one the rocket ship takes off, Davis goes on cruise control relying on memory and what are most likely bad sources. Much of this latter day material I have read before…dozens of times before. Not only that, but he manages to have a few dozen factual errors throughout this time in regards to television performances, awards, songs performed and even the years! What amazes me is the depth of research he undertook with a pre-1987 Guns N' Roses and yet he called in everything from there on out. Ironically almost all of his factual errors could have been alleviated with a simple Google search. I spent three-years assisting in the writing and research of a book earlier this decade and trust me, the research is a full time job in itself, and someone here dropped the ball. This may not seem like a make or break item, but there is no excuse for lazy journalism and it hurts the potential legacy of this book.

While the early chapters take the reader into a junkie and juvenile wonderland of information, Davis relies heavily on quotes and excerpts from old magazine articles. He has very little to offer in terms of insight without these excerpts. He did secure some in-depth interviews with Vicky Hamilton (GNR's first manager), but aside from that, Davis comes across more lucky than devout. Another issue I took with the book was its overall tone. I always believe a journalist has the responsibility to showcase the light and the darkness of an artist and their music; Davis appears to not just focus on the darkness but he relishes it. Chastising all music the band created post Appetite For Destruction one gets the sense he never cared for GNR's brand of music and merely wrote a book on them because there was a market for it and some prime source material from the early days fell into his lap, which is a shame because Davis has a way with words and his eclectic prose suits Guns N' Roses very well. However, most of the latter part of the book is spent bashing the band or Axl. Make no mistakes, this was a decadent band that did a lot of bad things however, I never sensed that Davis had a genuine love for this band or their music and this was merely a paycheck for him. This is demonstrated in the last few chapters of the book which prove to be a Cliff's Notes of the band's history post 1993, most of which he seemed to lift from Slash's 2007 biography and Mick Wall's recent book on Axl Rose. While Watch You Bleed has some truly unique material in it that makes it essential reading, the book by no means is essential. Get it from your library as it's a half-baked affair, which is a shame, this could have very easily been the biblical source for the band with a little more time, care and research.

Anthony Kuzminski is a Chicago based writer and Special Features Editor for the antiMusic Network and his daily writings can be read at The Screen Door and can be contacted at thescreendoor AT gmail DOT com.


Info and Links

Watch You Bleed: The Saga of Guns N' Roses (Rock Reads)

Preview and Purchase This CD Online

Visit the official homepage

More articles for this artist

tell a friend about this article

.


...end




.
News Reports
.
• Day in Rock:
Scott Weiland Imposter Fronts Stone Temple Pilots Cover Band?- Slipknot Announce North American Prepare For Hell Tour- Led Zeppelin Scores Greatest Guitar Riff Of All Time- more

• Day in Pop Suge Knight Shot At Chris Brown's VMA Pre-Party- Nicki Minaj Dancer Bitten By Snake at MTV VMAs Rehearsal- Arctic Monkeys' Lollapalooza 'Zombie' Biter Arrested- more

• B-Sides: The Beatles Voted America's Favorite Band- A Look Back At AC/DC's Back in Black- Paul Di'Anno Says He Hits Notes Rob Halford Can No Longer Hit- Slash- more

 Subscribe To Day in Rock

.
 
Reviews
.

• Kyle Hollingsworth - Speed of Life

• Meridian - The Awful Truth

• Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson - Thick as a Brick - Live in Iceland

• ZZ Top - Live at Montreux 2013

• Helstar - This Wicked Nest

• Get To Know... 21Octayne

• AUG - Be Careful What You Wish For...

• Hot In The City: Best Dog Award- Consider Me Dead- Mallevs

• Prong - Ruining Lives

• On The Record: The Steady As She Goes - Dangerous & Dead

• Rob Decoup - Pain

• James Brown - Get On Up Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

• Echo And The Bunnymen Live

• Peter Gabriel - Back to Front

• Marco Minnemann - Eeps

• Lollapalooza 2014: Day Three

• Lollapalooza 2014: Day Two


.
.
.

Search for Tickets

Or Browse For Tickets

.
.
Today's Rock News
.

• Scott Weiland Imposter Fronts Stone Temple Pilots Cover Band? (top story)

• Slipknot Announce North American Prepare For Hell Tour (top story)

• Led Zeppelin Scores Greatest Guitar Riff Of All Time (top story)

• Shadows Fall Launching Final Tour (top story)

• Pulled Apart By Horses Member Collapses From Illness (top story)

• Rush Working On Clockwork Angels Novel Sequel (top story)

• Alice Cooper's Raise The Dead Live Release Coming (top story)

• Wayne Static and Powerman 5000 Team For Fall Tour (top story)

• L.A. Guns, Poison, Cinderella Supergroup Release New Song (top story)

• Rob Zombie Leads 10th Annual Johnny Ramone Tribute (top story)

• Billy Duffy Discusses Direction Of The Cult's Next Album (top story)

• Former Dio Guitarist Recruits MSG Star For New Band (top story)

• Trouble and Pentagram Supergroup The Skull Releasing Debut Album (top story)

• The Jason Becker: Not Dead Yet: 3 Music Festival This Weekend (top story)

• Beatles' First U.S. Tour 50th Anniversary Celebrated With Ticket To Ride (top story)

• Alien Ant Farm Reveals New Song 'Homage' (top story)

• Steven Wilson Remixing Classic Yes Album (top story)

• Limp Bizkit's Release Unusual 'Endless Slaughter' Video (top story)

• Anthrax's Scott Ian Announces Book Signings (top story)

• Rise Against Praise Producers For The Black Market (top story)

• John Lennon's Killer Mark David Chapman Denied Parole (top story)

• Courtney Love Goes Off After Beer Can Thrown At Her (top story)

• Anthrax Want Lady Gaga To Sing Their Song (top story)

• Robert Plant Releases New Short Film (top story)

• Nuclear Assault Planning Final Album and Tour (top story)

• Dream Theater Releasing Breaking The Fourth Wall Next Month (top story)

• Black Star Riders Name Joe Elliott Replacement (top story)

• BRMC's Robert Levon Been Rocks With Father's Band On Tribute DVD (top story)

• Tate Claims Victory In Queensryche Battle (top story)

• Sonata Arctica Revisit Ecliptica For 15th Anniversary (top story)

• AC/DC Will Never Stop (top story)

• Bigelf Recruit John Wesley For Upcoming Tour (top story)

• Fearless Vampire Killers' Unbreakable Hearts Coming This Fall (top story)

• TNT Releasing Symphony Performance For 30th Anniversary (top story)

• Wolf Forced To Cancel Upcoming Dates (top story)

• Rush's Neil Peart Releasing New Book This Fall (top story)

• At The Gates Recruit Costin Chioreanu For New Album (top story)

• Breaking Benjamin Confirm New Lineup (top story)

• Motley Crue Country Tribute Headed For Top 10 Debut (top story)

Subscribe to Day in Rock Report by Email

.
.
Today's Pop News
.

• Suge Knight Shot At Chris Brown's VMA Pre-Party (top story)

• Nicki Minaj Dancer Bitten By Snake at MTV VMAs Rehearsal (top story)

• Arctic Monkeys' Lollapalooza 'Zombie' Biter Arrested (top story)

• Taylor Swift Makes Shake It Off Live Debut at MTV VMAs (top story)

• Miley Cyrus Faces Dominican Republic Ban (top story)

• Dierks Bentley, Kacey Musgraves, Kelly Clarkson Set For ACM Honors (top story)

• Ariana Grande, Jessie J & Nicki Minaj 'Bang Bang' At MTV VMAs (top story)

• Brad Paisley Releases New Album Moonshine in the Trunk (top story)

• Hunter Hayes Launching Tattoo Your Name Tour (top story)

• Coldplay Release True Love Video (top story)

• Chris Brown Delivers New Track X (top story)

• Juicy J, Nicki Minaj, Young Thug & Lil Bibby Release Low Video (top story)

• Florida Georgia Line Inspire Corn Maze (top story)

• Major Lazer Cartoon to Debut Next Year (top story)

• Jasmine V Recruits Kendrick Lamar For 'That's Me Right There' Video (top story)

• James Blake Premieres New Track 200 Press (top story)

• Diplo Reflects On Madonna in the Studio Recording Her New Album (top story)

• Kid Cudi Questions Lupe Fiasco' Personal Song Sale (top story)

• Photographer Reportedly Crashes Into Justin Bieber (top story)

• Interpol Streaming New Album Online (top story)

• Weird Al Spoofs Mad Men and Game Of Thrones Theme Songs (top story)

• Luke Bryan Puts Big Smile On 4-Year-Old Fan's Face (top story)

• Chuck Berry and Peter Sellars Receive 2014 Polar Music Prize (top story)

• Ty Dolla Sign Launching North American Headline Tour (top story)

• Tim McGraw Delivers New Single 'Shotgun Rider' (top story)

• Grouplove Release Theme Song To BoJack Horseman (top story)

• Darius Rucker Releases First Single From New Album (top story)

• Neil Young Divorcing Wife After 36 Years of Marriage (top story)

• Oasis Reveal Acoustic Demo Of She's Electric (top story)

• Chris Young Reveals Inspiration For New Single Lonely Eyes (top story)

• Kellie Pickler Discusses Next Album (top story)

• Nicole Scherzinger Switches Gears On New Song On The Rocks (top story)

• Justin Bieber Covers Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire (top story)

• Jimmy Fallon Crashes Julia Roberts Red Carpet Interview (top story)

• Allison Janney Celebrates Her Emmy Win With Make Out Session (top story)

• Fatal Shooting At Wiz Khalifa Concert (top story)

• Young Jeezy Arrested For Gun Possession (top story)

• Aphex Twin Says Kanye West Tried To Rip Him Off (top story)

• Eminem Announces New Double Album 'Shady XV' (top story)

• 50 Cent and G-Unit Release Surprise EP (top story)

• Usher Releases New Mike WiLL Made It Produced Song (top story)

• Homeless Runaway Accepts Miley Cyrus' 'Video of the Year' VMA (top story)

• Martina McBride Expands Everlasting Tour With Fall Leg (top story)

• Jessie J, Ariana Grande and Nicki Minaj Release 'Bang Bang' Video (top story)

• Taylor Swift Shakes Off Country Radio (top story)

• Little Big Town Launching Pain Killer Tour This Fall (top story)

• NBA Star Lance Stephenson Releases Rap Freestyle (top story)

• Charli XCX Goes Heathers For 'Break the Rules' Video (top story)

• Luke Bryan Added to Fashion Rocks TV Special (top story)

• Eminem and Sia Reveal Full 'Guts Over Fear' Duet (top story)

• Afrojack and Martin Garrix Deliver 'Turn Up the Speakers' Video (top story)

• Lee Brice Releases Emotional 'That Don't Sound Like You' (top story)

• The ACM Awards Celebrating 50th Anniversary with New Book (top story)

• Lil Bibby Teams With Wiz Khalifa And Juicy J On For The Low Pt. 2 (top story)

.
.
Latest B-Sides News
.


• The Beatles Voted America's Favorite Band

• A Look Back At AC/DC's Back in Black

• Paul Di'Anno Says He Hits Notes Rob Halford Can No Longer Hit

• Opeth Feel No Affinity With Metal Bands

• Slash's Live Performance Of World On Fire Goes Online

• Kamelot Release Live Falling Like The Fahrenheit Video

• Counting Crows Release Scarecrow Video From New Album

• Me Vs Hero Challenge Fans For Access To Album Stream

• Keith Richards Pays Tribute To Chuck Berry

• Jon Allen's New Video Made By Teenaged Film Student

• Abysmal Dawn Stream New Song Inanimate

• Singled Out: Hero For Today's All You Wanted

More News

.
 
anti Worthy Links
.
• AudioNationRadio.com • The Screen Door • A Journal of Musical Things • Lloyd Zeffler blog • Demolish Mag • Nightwatcher's House of Rock • CJ Chilvers • Deja Voodoo • The 1st Five • thecopycat.biz • Hard Rock Memorabilia • Day in Rock @twitter

.
  .
.

Click Here to Buy T-Shirts!
Click Here to Buy T-Shirts!



 

Tell a Friend about this page - Contact Us - Privacy - antiMusic Email - Why we are antiMusic

Copyright© 1998 - 2014 Iconoclast Entertainment Group All rights reserved. antiMusic works on a free link policy for reprinting of our original articles, click here for details. Please click here for legal restrictions and terms of use applicable to this site. Use of this site signifies your agreement to the terms of use.