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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 4 September 2006
Bought Appetite for Destruction and looking for a follow up purchase buy this album. GNR has changed from the pure hard rock to a more (but still brilliant) tame...mature style. Songs now include piano...classical instruments and bakcing, singers but dont be put off by the more complicated cast this is still a hard rockin' masterpiece.

9/10
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 22 November 2003
I do love this album, don't get me wrong, but after Appetite and Lies, it's like an offering from a different band. I guess the raw edge of the songwriting is lacking in places, because most of the songs were written after the band found fame, and they no longer had quite the same hard nosed aggression. After all, it's hard to be as angry and bitter in a five million dollar house. In it's place, however, is a more melodic quality, and even now, ten years later, when power ballads seem so painfully cheesy, you can't help but appreciate them at the odd moment. My one big problem with both the Illusion albums though, is that they are so irritatingly over produced, the songs are all a little too polished, and this seems to leave them sounding very contrived, and this from a band whose "cock-rock" posturing all looks so contrived now anyway, it does them no favours. A great album, but one you sometimes have to dig into a little to reap the full benefit.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 4 December 2011
First up, Amazon seem to have grouped together the reviews for this CD album and the bands live video release. How they could make such an easy mistake is beyond me.

So Use Your Illusion 1 was released as the same day as 2 back in 1991. A double album and costing double the money! Not easy for any kids back in the day to own. Here we get 16 tracks of varying quality. And although a bundle of them were actually written during the Appetite era, this album doesn't feel like the same band recorded Appetitte. But hey ho, Guns got huge and this record is too over produced.

We kick off with Right Next Door to Hell which features superb lyrics and a catchy tune and a great starter for the record. Though check out Duff's bass at the beginning and you can already tell that this album sounds too clean. Dust N' Bones is sung by Izzy, and turned up loud is quite a groovy tune, always sounded appalling live though. Live and Let Die is the opposite in that it was wham bam in your face as a live song but is incredibly pedantic and flat on record. Don't Cry is a well written song, though the very original demos sounded much better and the song fails to impress because of the lavish production.

Perfect Crime is a two minute thunderbolt of a song, and one really is impressed with Axl's shotgun lyrics, even if the song was soon forgotten by the band after their US first leg tour. Indeed in any case I don't think it has been played live for 20 years. This frantic song is followed by perhaps the slowest song over the two albums, in You Ain't the First, a little ditty and kooky, but a welcome relief. Bad Obsession is one of Illusions highlights, bluesy and non generic and a great tune. Back Off Bitch does feel a little dated but it is at least sleazy rock n' roll. Now we get to a missed opportuntiy, Double Talkin' Jive. Had this songs solo been 6 mins or so we could have been looking at a classic. Some songs beg to be extended out, some don't (Oasis were always terrible at this). But DTJ should have been a lengthy masterpiece. The band somewhat corrected this for their live shows.

November Rain has been often hyped up. But apart from showing Axl's piano playing skills I have never been a fan of the song. Epic? So what. It always slowed down the live shows too. The Garden is again top form for the Gunners, and it's great to hear Alice Cooper on this track. The video is perhaps the best and more 'real' that GN'R ever did. But Garden of Eden is pap and just throwaway stuff. Don't Damn Me remains by 2014 the only track never to have been played live, a shame since it has a killer riff. But it is very vocal which would be taxing to sing, especially now for Axl. Bad Apples isn't too bad either, without being great. Dead Horse is pap- and for some reason was again played live on many times. The album ends with the 10 minute Coma, a bit hit and miss but it does contain wonderful lyrics and great solos. It is a rock classic of sorts.

All in all growing up with this band, Illusion was a come down, no two ways about it. At the time you support the record as a fan, and it's only as time goes on that you can genuinely reflect more on the album. But the whole double album thing was ill conceived. If they had taken the best tracks from 1 and 2 we could have been looking at a great rock record.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 1 March 2000
This album Kicks A$$. It contains the masterpiece guitar work by the extremely talented Slash, and put together with the vocal smasher AxL, it can blow you away!
Songs Like "Don't Damn Me", "Back Off Bitch", and "Right Next Door To Hell" will rock you, while songs like "November Rain" and "Don't Cry" will soothe the savage beast in you, and songs like "Coma" will make you think. this album also contains an excellent cover of the Paul & Linda Mccartney song for Bond "Live and Let Die".
This is a definate for all music collections. The Illusion Compilations I & II kick A$$. THEY ROCK!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 13 March 2001
This is a fantastic album! As I said, not Appetite for Destruction, but still the second best album I own. Great songs = 'November Rain' (an absolute tribute to music in general),'Live and Let Die', 'Garden of Eden', 'Dust and Bones', 'Don't Cry', 'Back off Bitch', Double Talkin' Jive', 'Coma'...Wait, I'm naming all the songs on the album!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 April 2004
I recently purchased this album and within a few listens I think I can safely say that it is a classic. The songs "November Rain", "Don't Cry" and "Double Talkin' Jive" are immense, with November Rain especially deserving its reputation. The gap between their albums obviously did not remove any of GnRs talent. It also includes one of my favourite lines from any song ever, "I can't stop thinking about seeing you one more time" from Bad Obsession. While not their best, this is certainly worth a place in any Guns n' Roses collection. However, if you do not own it, get Appetite for Destruction first.
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on 30 December 2010
After conquering the world with their debut 'Appetite For Destruction' four years earlier, it would have been simple for Guns N' Roses to rest on their laurels and take it easy - that, however, is exactly what they did NOT do with this follow-up LP released in 1991. Axl Rose is well-known for pushing himself to the limit and that's something he did when faced with the challenge of a lifetime; How do you follow-up what is considered one of the greatest rock albums ever made? The answer, was to change direction and do something completely different. 'Use Your Illusion' is where Guns N' Roses spread their wings musically and became rock royalty.

As Duff McKagan (GN'R bassist) quite rightly said: "The second album is a different sound. It's the sound of a different band. When we made 'Appetite...' we were all living in one apartment sleeping on the floor, by the time we made the second record we all had our own houses and a million in the bank.."

It's widely beleived by rock critics that if Guns N' Roses combined the best material from Use Your Illusion I & II onto just one record it would have created one of the greatest rock albums of our time. As it stands, however, September 1991 saw the release of something quite monumental in the shape of, for the first time ever, two separate rock albums from the same artist on the same day which debuted at number 1 and 2 on the Billboard 100 chart.

Among the mammoth 30+ new songs are some tracks now considered all-time classics (November Rain, You Could Be Mine, Don't Cry, Estranged, Coma) however the album is not without fault. Scattered among these classics are songs you could only describe as filler, or b-side material, such as the alternate version of Don't Cry, the soft So Fine and the crazy My World.

It is this inconsistency which is the album's major flaw. It appears that the band literally chose the playlist at random, which is surprising given Axl's notorious perfectionism, and this results in us ending up with a mix and match of different styles which hinders the listeners ability to get into the groove of the great new songs GN'R displayed here. For instance the metallic frustration of Axl Rose's Perfect Crime is followed up by the bar-room acoustics of Izzy Stradlin's You Ain't The First.

'Use Your Illusion I' is the heavier of the two albums and begins with a riotous Right Next Door To Hell, an angry blast from Axl Rose regarding being sued by his neighbor, and a track which features a great bass hookline yet fails to capture the anger of the bands previous outing, 'Appetite For Destruction'. All fears that GN'R had lost it were, however, firmly quashed when the next track kicks into gear - the slow bluesy groove of Izzy Stradlin's awesome Dust N' Bones firmly reminds listeners why Guns N' Roses were the best at what they did and features some delightful hooks from the impressive tagteam of Stradlin and Slash. In fact, Slash is on fine form throughout the entire LP here, delivering easily the best guitar work of his entire career culminating in the facemelting riff of Double Talkin' Jive and the equally tremendous solos of November Rain and Coma.

Axl brings up some personal issues on this album such as the media's obsession with watching his every move in his private life (Don't Damn Me) and the sour relationship between he and his ex-wife Eryn Everly (Back Off Bitch) as well as the drug driven epic known as Coma, the final track on the album and the true show-stealer. This epic track clocks in at over ten minutes long and sees GN'R truly spread their wings musically.

If you are looking for 'Appetite For Destruction' you will not find it here, this is the sound of a more mature band who knew they had to do different things to further their career and that's exactly what they did. The problem is they covered so many different bases here that they found it impossible to follow it up in the future. Some GN'R fans found the "... Illusion" albums too difficult to swallow and wanted a straightforward rock album, however the band themselves went from strength-to-strength on the back of this album's release and it's easy to see why, there is some fantastic work here and "Use Your Illusion" cements Guns N' Roses as the last great rock band of our time.
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on 3 December 2003
How do you follow up the greatest debut album of all time?
That was the question facing GN'R after releasing the awesome Appetite For Destruction in 1987. Four years later, the reply was release 2 albums, as the Gunners unleashed the 2 Use Your Illusion albums on the world. This is the first of the two albums.
The album is extremely varied from all out ballsy rockers like the opener "Right Next Door To Hell" and "Dont Damn Me", to epic ballads like stand-out track "November Rain", via bluesy songs like "Bad Obsession" and "Dust N Bones" and everything in between. There's even a Bond cover! (Live And Let Die)
You can really see the influences of the various Gunners in the different songs. On the whole, the album was mostly written by Axl and Izzy although both Duff and Slash wrote a few songs. With the addition of Dizzy and Matt to the line up, you can also see their influence on the sound of the group. You can also notice Axl's liking for Nine Inch Nails as songs like "Garden of Eden" have samples giving them a slight industrial flavour. This direction is likely to be continued when the new GN'R release Chinese Democracy.
On the whole this is a great album with some great tracks like "Dont Cry" and "November Rain", although I think UYI 2 is a better album. This ones still great though!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 22 March 2004
This has got to be by far the best music DVD I have ever seen!! Guns N Roses were an amazing band (pre 1994) and this DVD proves it! Both Use Your Illusion 1 and 2 are brilliant and you can't really buy one without the other.
Both Dvds include massive hits like Mr Brownstone, Paradise City, Sweet child o mine and my personal favourite, So Fine. Axl sounds better than ever whilst changing into a never ending supply of t shirts and hotpants!!! Matt does an amazing drum solo on Illusion 2 and Duff blasts out a brilliant version of The Misfits' "Attitude" on Illusion 1. And of course you have Slash with his famous guitar solos! Each member of the band demonstrates pure and utter talent.
Even if you have only just started listening to Guns N Roses (WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN!!!) this is a great DVD to get you started. A must for any hard core GNRs fan.
Buy this now!!!!!
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on 29 April 2000
This is a masterpiece! Guns N'Roses show an amazing talent for making complicated but still very rocking music. They stick to the same basic style throughout this double album, but they explore several corners of it. They experiment without ever forgetting what it's all about: great rock music!
It's one of these albums that you listen to year after year, and you keep discovering new things. Your favourite songs change over the years. The eternally heartbreaking and beautiful ballad »November Rain« was always a favourite of mine, but nowadays a good rocker like »Dead Horse« has climbed up the hitlist as well. Then there's the jammin' »Bad Obsession«, the two thrashers »Back Off Bitch« and »Double Talkin' Jive«, the noisy opener »Right Next Door To Hell«... and so on, and so on.
The best song Guns N'Roses have ever composed is on this album as well. The postively dark-sarcastic story told in the brilliant 10-minutes track »Coma« will always remain a masterly piece of rock art to me!
The two »Use Your Illusion« double albums belong in everyone's music collection.
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