My latest, and if you take the te out of latest, my last, book, XaW Files: Beyond Humanity was most inspired by Guns N’ Roses’ Illusion albums, with the band achieving a classic level of musicianship on songs like November Rain, Estranged and Coma.
Guns N’ Roses Visionary on Civil War
While I wrote in a blog earlier in the week that Axl got the GnR Democracy album title wrong to be considered a visionary, I do think he and the other members of Guns N’ Roses can be considered visionary for some of their songs.
I think my favourite Guns song Civil War is the most visionary for the current situation facing Europe, North America and the non-Islamic world, as we risk importing their civil war if we don’t handle the migration from the Middle-East carefully.
Although the Civil War song seems to have been written reflecting mostly on American wars, I think it is most relevant today for the brainwashing Middle-Eastern leaders and civil wars that are threatening to draw the world into them; both foreign recruits and opposing armies; and send their own civilians out into a wider world they have not been socialised to understand; or don’t want to understand… if they survive the terrible journeys they are usually conned and forced into undertaking. I have sympathy for the innocent, and especially the children.
The Shining Path guerrilla officer quoted in the Civil War song saying “We practice selective annihilation of mayors and government officials, for example, to create a vacuum, then we fill that vacuum. As popular war advances, peace is closer” seems relevant to I.S. tactics, as well as Islamist Trojan Horse tactics in the U.K., such as the Birmingham schools scandal; although it is character assassination then.
Some Civil War Lyrics from Metro Lyrics
Look at your young men fighting
Look at your women crying
Look at your young men dying
The way they’ve always done before
Look at the hate we’re breeding
Look at the fear we’re feeding
Look at the lives we’re leading
The way we’ve always done before
And the wars go on with brainwashed pride
For the love of God
I don’t need your civil war
It feeds the rich while it buries the poor
Your power hungry sellin’ soldiers
In a human grocery store
Ain’t that fresh
I don’t need your civil war
Ow, oh no, no, no, no, no
Look at the shoes you’re filling
Look at the blood we’re spilling
Look at the world we’re killing
The way we’ve always done before
Look in the doubt we’ve wallowed
Look at the leaders we’ve followed
Look at the lies we’ve swallowed
And I don’t want to hear no more
I most liked the Civil War song because I liked the tune, anti-war message, and it had an intro from Cool Hand Luke, which was one of my favourite movies at the time. I’d just like to point out there that I’m anti-war, not anti-military, and unfortunately think our military defence is very important at the moment.
In my first poetry collection, which also includes a poem criticising a child home abuse scandal in my beloved Jersey, I wrote: ‘In this century, international status will not be measured in military might, but how nations help the planet’s plight.’ Unfortunately, I.S. is making that hope as wrong as Axl’s Democracy option at the moment!
I could go on to discuss whether I relate to the Cool Hand movie as much now, in my middle-age, but that’s probably better left for another time. I do still relate more to Luke than the prison governor, which is maybe why I feel so strongly about the child abuse scandals, but probably not as much as I did in my youth. I don’t think it’s a good or bad thing, just the inevitable changing through age, and suffering more misguided youthful rebellion than being a part of.
The Civil War song has a history as cool as its contents, first appearing on the 1990 compilation Nobody’s Child: Romanian Angel Appeal and later on the 1991 album Use Your Illusion II. It was also written by the three Guns members now reforming; Axl, Slash and Duff; and was the only Illusion song featuring original drummer, Steven Adler. I hope the Guns civil war is now over, and all members can be part of the reunion.
Civil War Achievements and Influences
Complex samples and allusions were techniques I loved about later Guns N’ Roses, with Axl again using them perfectly for the GnR song Madagascar.
They are techniques I adapted for my writing, and I hope I reached a similar level of skill to Guns N’ Roses in XaW Files: Beyond Humanity, which has a similarly cynical and critical theme to Axl’s lyrics too.
Guns N’ Roses were Inspired Too
If you’re thinking how can he call himself a self-proclaimed genius when he was so influenced by Guns N’ Roses, I would answer that we’re all influenced by somebody, thousands of years after the first writings were recorded; and many more years after the first oral histories were passed down through generations of ancestors.
Guns were inspired by Aerosmith and the Rolling Stones amongst others, with the former being called the American version of the latter in the 1970s, with Steven Tyler even looking similar to Mick Jagger. They were inspired by earlier rock and blues.
Guns N’ Roses covered the Rolling Stones’ Sympathy for the Devil. I just read that Jagger said the song was inspired by French existentialism, which was another inspiration on my writing, kind of bringing me full circle; but then, I was probably influenced to read some existentialism by its connections to the 1960s counter-culture.
Anyway, especially for one-dimensionals who accuse me of being every character I write or act, I would just like to point out that I think Jagger was acting the devil in the song, rather than thinking he is it, or really having sympathy for anything evil. He was drawing attention to how human society often ignores real evil in society, because it is politically correct to do so: ‘Who killed the Kennedys, when after all it was you and me.’
I think the biggest example of this in modern Britain was New Labour and the liberal elite ignoring the child grooming cases for twenty years, and that’s why I think Britain needs a period of calm; a placid lake instead of stormy sea; while we try and stabilise the society we have, before trying to build more layers of austerity, poverty, negativity, overcrowding, misunderstanding, intolerance, religion, culture and environmental destruction.
Both Civil War and Madagascar cite Martin Luther King, showing their 1960s counter-culture influence too – they are about the same age as me… a little older I think!
‘We don’t want your civil war…’
Guns N’ Roses The Most Dangerous Band in the World documentary on BBC4 at 22.00, Friday February 5th.
XaW Files: Beyond Humanity available at Amazon etc.