Various Bring You To Your Knees: A Tribute To Guns & Roses

With the current "rawk” revival complemented by the reoccurring hip-ocrisy of all things ’80s, unfortunately including glam rock, you’d expect GN’R to be cashing in, big time. But while Axl squanders his life and savings on Chinese Democracy, and his former band-mates make a go of it with the junkie from Stone Temple Pilots, the underground has decided to honour their legacy anyway. Bring You To Your Knees features heavyweights like the Dillinger Escape Plan, Every Time I Die, Eighteen Visions and Most Precious Blood, among others. Of course, the trick to any tribute album is in injecting something new into the interpretations while retaining the original hooks, or why not just listen to the originals? While many of the tracks get a heavier treatment, they otherwise remain static structurally (MPB’s "Sweet Child O’ Mine,” Unearth’s "It’s So Easy,” ETID’s "I Used To Love Her”). However, the Escape Plan utterly Dillinger-ises "My Michelle,” rendering it almost unrecognisable, save for the intro and its signature riff, with broken, frantic tempos, jazzy runs and countless stop-starts, complete with their trademark noodling. While the majority of the covers are drawn from Appetite For Destruction, the highlight of the disc is drawn from Use Your Illusion I, with Time In Malta’s take on "November Rain.” TIM strike the perfect balance between originality and homage by unleashing their melodic yet brutal sound, complete with incredibly slow breakdowns, while retaining the original’s pathos, minus the pretence (should cock rockers really play piano?). One has to wonder where Torn Apart’s superior version of "It’s So Easy” is though. (Law of Inertia)