Guns N' Roses have released another long-awaited new song titled "The General," roughly one month after debuting it live in Los Angeles. You can listen to it below.

The mid-tempo track is a far cry from the band's signature hard rock sound, alternating between mellow trip-hop verses and grinding, doom-laden choruses. Axl Rose's lyrics are unflinching, as the frontman sings, "My only regret / Is that I never took the time to forget / All those unspoken feelings / That were never spared."

"The General" marks the fourth song Guns N' Roses have released since Rose, Slash and Duff McKagan reunited in 2016. It follows 2021's "Absurd" and "Hard Skool" and this year's "Perhaps." Just like those songs, "The General" dates back to the long-gestating and exorbitantly expensive Chinese Democracy sessions.

The song was initially supposed to arrive in October as the vinyl B-side to "Perhaps," but the release date was delayed. The "Perhaps" / "The General" vinyl is now set to ship today.

"The General" Has Been Part of GN'R Lore for Years

Hardcore Guns N' Roses fans have known about "The General" for decades. Rose reportedly recruited composer and pianist Marco Beltrami to add orchestral arrangements to the song in 2002. It was apparently intended to appear on the third installment of a planned Chinese Democracy trilogy, which has not yet come to fruition.

Former Skid Row singer and longtime Rose friend Sebastian Bach praised the song in a 2007 Metal Edge interview. "One of my favorite songs — I asked Axl if I could mention the song titles and he said, 'Fine' — and one of my favorite songs is this song called 'The General,'" Bach said. "It's by far the heaviest metal tune I think I’ve ever heard Axl do, this slow, grinding riff with these high, piercing vocals, screaming vocals.

"I was like, 'When is this coming out?' And he said, '2012.' I was like, 'Dude, you're killin' me!' He goes, 'Well, this comes out on the third record. It relates to this song, it's a trilogy, this goes with this lyrically.' He's got it all figured out, he's just different than other people."


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Gallery Credit: UCR Staff

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