17 years full of hype, rumors, and personnel changes eliminated any chance Guns N' Roses' 2008 album 'Chinese Democracy' ever had of getting a fair, unbiased shot from most of the listening public.
Now, we're not here to try and convince you this now six-year-old LP is a masterpiece. But at the very least, it does contain many innovative and exciting songs that are well worth a second listen. You can hear the best of those on our list of Five Guns N' Roses 'Chinese Democracy' Songs You Need to Hear Again:
For all the jokes made about 'Chinese Democracy''s long gestation process -- and let's be honest the production credits look like something out of an 'Avengers' movie -- on songs like this you can see where at least some of that time and money went. 'Sorry' is dynamic, nuanced and atmospheric, with a chorus that achieves a newly sophisticated level of heaviness.
The best moments on 'Chinese Democracy' find Axl Rose diving deeper into the twisting long form experimentation of 'Use Your Illusion' epics like 'Estranged,' but as songs like the title track and 'Better' prove, he could still bring the riff-rock too. We did you a favor and skipped ahead to the most exciting sixty seconds of the entire album, a cathartic emotional explosion that successfully brings the electro-rock thrills only hinted at by 'Oh My God' and 'My World.'
'Appetite for Destruction' purists be damned, the influence of Elton John and Queen clearly beats strongly within Rose. On this baroque piano-based heartbreaker, he demonstrates once again that there are very few artists who can bring drama into rock and roll better than he can. Also suggested: the highly cinematic, very daring 'If the World.'
Sometimes, the wheel doesn't need to be re-invented. This churning two-toned rocker doesn't really do anything we didn't already hear on the 'Use Your Illusion' albums. But the way Rose's distinct rasp fits in so perfectly with the familiar guitar crunch on this infectiously catchy chorus would have made 'I.R.S.' one of that collection's clear high points, too.
The last five songs on 'Chinese Democracy' are uniformly impressive -- you can blame our Twitter followers for choosing this over the equally worthy 'Madagascar,' by the way -- and this alternately ruminative and explosive track ends the album in an extremely thrilling manner. And it makes us curious to see what the band comes up with next. We've just learned not to set any timetables on when that might happen.
Bonus! Little-Known Guns N' Roses Facts: