The Newcastle Academy 2 can get crammed pretty easy, and it's already past boiling as Falling Red take to the stage; their own dedicated support covers the first four rows. With a guitarist who bears a striking resemblance to Nikki Sixx, it's clear from the passion of their performance that nothing does it better then the songs you write yourself. You'd do well to check out their debut album, Shake The Faith
When Guns 2 Roses emerge it's an uncomfortably early time of 8pm, and aside from their timekeeping, everything else seems to mirror Guns N' Roses to a fine art. From the wardrobe and the mysterious absences of the vocalist during solos, right down to the microphone - the best compliment you can give is to say that when Guns 2 Roses took to the stage you'd be mistaken for thinking this was GN'FN'R!
The band consists of an 'Axl', a 'Duff', a 'Gilby', a 'Slash' and a drummer, transporting you back to the 90s. The set list is perfect, with cuts from Use Your Illusion, Appetite for Destruction and GNR Lies including 'Used To Love Her', 'Civil War' and 'Paradise City'
'Welcome To The Jungle' starts with an introduction about a meeting in Newcastle Airport - a nice touch, and the group even stop mid set to try and flog a Falling Red T Shirt that's been left on the stage. The Rolling Stones' 'Only Women Bleed' acts as a prelude to 'Knocking On Heaven's Door' with note-for-note synchronicity. And while there's no 'Patience' you can't please everyone, even those who wished they might have sang the Alternative Lyrics to 'Don't Cry'.
Suprisingly, the band choose not to air any material from GNR's most recent effort, Chinese Democracy. G2R have played some of this material before and it's been well received. Tonight, however, them seem more focused on the classics.
The crowd seem a little lacklustre, with the back row only coming alive during 'You Could Be Mine' and the insanely popular 'Sweet Child O' Mine'. Despite nobody trying to deceive you walking in the door, it almost seems the majority are disappointed that this isn't the real thing.
Guns 2 Roses couldn't have written it better if they'd tried. On the same day their UK tour begins in Newcastle, Guns N' Roses start selling tickets for their first UK arena tour in 4 years. Guns 2 Roses have really warmed things up tonight, and for many, have set a high bar with their electric and passionate performance.