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Delivers the vicarious thrills but where's the man behind the hat?,
This review is from: Slash: The Autobiography (Hardcover)
Slash, ghost-written by Rolling Stone staff writer Anthony Bozza, promises us two things: the inside track on one of the defining rock bands of their era, whilst simultaneously tempting us with vicarious drug thrills. It delivers on both counts but does so in such a bland way that I kept thinking while reading this, "Am I missing something?"
Yes, Slash gives us all the snort-and-tell stories of rock and roll decadence that you can stomach: daylight hallucinations of attacking monsters, crippling heroin addiction, vodka induced delirium tremors and so forth, all the while riding the crest of a wave of what was then the world's biggest rock and roll band, Guns N' Roses. And yes, Slash also gives us his perspective on how GNR was put together with an "us against the world" attitude and how it all so acrimoniously fell apart in a mess of years of legal wrangling. The final few chapters go on to tell us of his joy of parenthood and his post-Guns musical career, neither of which are particularly interesting for the reader.
The trouble with this book is that, for all the wild stories it contains, it is just so bland. Unlike other autobiographies, such as Keith Richard's Life or Simon Pegg's Nerd Do Well, Slash's own personality really doesn't leap off the page. Again, perhaps I am missing a trick here: that this book is so calm, easy to read and ordinary, could indeed be an accurate representation of who Slash is as a person and I am certainly in no position to make that judgement but through it all, this book didn't seem to have any real passion or personality that leapt off the page.
That said, I imagine for most readers, they will devour this book for the short but furious ride that was Guns N' Roses and for that part, Saul "Slash" Hudson tells us as much as we can expect, wary as he must be from the litigious Axl Rose. For those looking for an in-depth personality portrait of life at the centre of a rock and roll circus, will leave only partially satisfied.