"Welcome to Destruction"

I found another little chunk of rock infamy for your listening pleasure.

As you may be aware (insert “sarcasm” tags here), Guns N’ Roses, in particular Axl Rose, is no stranger to controversy. Throughout Guns N' Roses’ career, Rose has been notorious for personally addressing disruptive fans and giving instructions to security guards from the stage, at times stopping concerts to deal with issues in the crowd.

In a 1992 Rolling Stone interview Rose explained, “Most performers would go to a security person in their organization, and it would just be done very quietly. I’ll confront the person, stop the song: ‘Guess what – you wasted your money, you get to leave.’”

In 1988 and again in 2006, Axl was involved in incidents in England involving the audience; the first ending tragically when two fans were crushed. (Note: The final report into the 1988 incident at Castle Donnington noted that Rose had immediately cooperated with venue security when advised of the dangerous crowd conditions, and had attempted to calm the crowd.)

Maybe the most infamous Guns N’ Roses riot happened in July 1991, during the Use Your Illusion tour. The incident known as the “Riverport Riot” happened at the Riverport Amphitheater in Maryland Heights, Mo. during the July 2, 1991, show.

During the band's performance of “Rocket Queen,” Axl jumped into the audience and tackled a fan that was taking pictures of the show. After being pulled out of the audience by members of the crew, Rose said, “Well, thanks to the lame-ass security, I'm going home.” He then threw down his microphone and left the stage.

According to a report from Babu Barat, the editor of St. Louis music tabloid Just Rock, the house lights came up about 20 minutes after the band left the stage. At that point, all hell started to break loose: The crowd threw anything they could get their hands on, including chairs, tables, and pieces of the stage. (Read the full article here, including Barat’s interview with Axl a short time after the riot.)

Today’s music is the final song leading into the riot. I thought about posting the whole show, but the sound quality isn’t that great. Naturally these make more sense listened to in context, i.e. if you only listen to the track titled “Riot,” you’re gonna be like, wtf?

Rocket Queen.mp3
Axl Jumps Into the Crowd.mp3

There are also several videos on YouTube depicting the incident.

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At 11:42 PM , Blogger DavidEwoldt said...

Go to http://www.kshe95.com/ and check out the riot room in the St. Louis radio station's virtual museum. The film included lasts about 24 minutes and has interviews with Sebastian Bach of Skid Row, who opened the show, as well as people from the venue as well as the guy who Axl tackled and subsequently paid a good sum of money for his injuries.


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