My previous post was a review of Steven Adler's book, My Appetite for Destruction, which was not my favorite book. However, one idea that Steven floats in his book is about Axl, and the thought resonated with me.
As we all know, Axl is notorious for starting the show late...really late. It has become his calling card or his identity; that he is completely unpredictable. Steven attempted to shed some light on this issue, and quite honestly, the explanation made sense to me. Essentially, what Steven writes is that Axl performs best in an emotionally charged environment. So basically, Axl will wait - and he will make his fans wait - causing impatience, anxiousness, frustration, and an adverse reaction to the unknown. The crowd begins to get worked up and the tension and emotion in the building rises, and then, just when it is about to peak, you hear the opening bars to "Welcome to the Jungle." Wherever you are, odds are the crowd is going to erupt. His making the crowd wait and wait only served to get people worked up, and ultimately it all adds up to a better, emotionally charged performance.
So, is this brilliance or is this simply being an egotistical, irresponsible performer? Personally, I think it is brilliant and it works for him. Not every band could pull the same stunts and get away with it. If I go see KISS, I know the show will start and end on time, and it will all go according to plan. There are no surprises, but you get what you expect. But, with Axl, you don't know what to expect and it results in an environment that is better suited for a Guns 'n' Roses show.
So your thoughts: is Axl a genius, or am I just buying into the hype?