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Guns N' Roses

Everyone has heard of Guns N' Roses, and for better or worse, most people have a strong opinion of the band. But what's often lost in the tangle of melodrama and inter-band recriminations is what made GN'R popular in the first place. Appetite for Destruction came out of L.A. at the height of that city's late-'80s glam scene, without the posturing platitudes of dullard pretty-boy pussyhounds, and it offered a gritty depiction of the dark side of rock-and-roll life in the City of Angels. Within those invigorating tales of drugs, disillusionment and decadence are hints of a deeply buried innocence coaxed forth by the power of authentic love. It is that streetwise romanticism that has informed the band's songwriting to the present day — even if Axl Rose is the only original member left.

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