Poll

Which album do you prefer?

AC/DC - Back in Black
Guns N' Roses - Appetite for Destruction

Voting closes: April 19, 2027, 06:54:10 PM

Author Topic: Battle of the 80s Rock LP's Volume 2: Back in Black vs Appetite for Destruction  (Read 2559 times)

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Offline KevShmev

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Ah yes, two more hugely popular hard rock records that many would argue still stand up today.

I think the GnR album might have higher highs (maybe), but Back in Black is so darn consistent, and I've always found Appetite... a bit hit or miss.  AC/DC all the way for me.

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Interesting matchup, Kev.

I love Appetite, but this is easy. Back In Black all the way.
would have thought the same thing but seeing the OP was TAC i immediately thought Maiden or DT related
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Offline Trav86

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Back In Black easily.  Appetite is an awesome record, butÖ very few are better than BIB.
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Offline Bolsters

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Back in Black is so darn consistent, and I've always found Appetite... a bit hit or miss.
It's the opposite for me, Back in Black always just had too many songs I thought were average for me to ever hold it in as high regard as everyone else, even at the height of my fandom for AC/DC.

I'm voting for Appetite.

Offline Puppies_On_Acid

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Back in Black is the epitome of boring rock music.

So Appetite wins by default.
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Offline Volante99

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Too hard to vote

I consider them both to be the two greatest hard rock albums ever made.

I might give a slight edge to Appetite for being a tiny bit more consistent. That album is just too damn good, like better than it has any right to be. Iíve often had conspiracies in my head that some of the cuts were ghost written by more talented musicians.

Offline Lowdz

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I loved both - played the hell out of them. I was into GnR for about a year before they blew up in the UK. Iíd bought the album on import. I lost a little love fir it when too many of the songs were played everywhere, but when Axl started acting like a complete tool I just walked away from them. I didnít buy anything after Lies.

These days, Iím far more likely to reach for BiB so voted for that.

Offline Cruithne

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I think the two best songs are on Back In Black but I only like about half that album and all of A4D, so the latter gets my vote.

Online kingshmegland

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I like reading how many songs are average on Back in Black. Every song was on the radio when it came out.

Not many albums could boast about that.

AC/DC all the way.
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Offline ReaperKK

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If you asked me a couple years ago it'd be GnR easily, but over time I've really come to appreciate AC/DC a lot more so BiB gets my vote.

Offline Stadler

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This is really tough.   The best parts of both are really good.  The weaker parts of both are, shall we say, weaker.   I'm going to give the edge to Back In Black, because there are fewer weaker tracks and it's so seminal in my musical upbringing.   But both are records I still listen to a LOT, and both have songs I want to hear frequently.

Offline pg1067

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For me, this is the biggest no brainer in the history of no-brainers.

I don't LOVE BIB.  Bells, Shoot, the title track and Shook are all really good, fun songs.  However, AC/DC has a very bluesy side that doesn't appeal to me.  However,...

GNR is pretty much the worst band ever.  I will never forget the day I first heard the band.  In the '70s and early '80s, southern California had two MAJOR rock stations:  KLOS and KMET.  These were huge AOR stations that played all the best rock music.  Jim Ladd was a staple on KMET.  By the mid-'80s, however, those stations were softening their format big time and, by early 1987, KMET changed to a new age station.  In early 1986, a station called KNAC converted to an all-hard rock and metal format that it dubbed "Pure Rock."  This was THE radio station of my early adult days.

Anyway, I was at work (Baskin Robbins at a mall) sometime during the middle part of 1987, and the DJ was saying that he or she was going to play a song by this great new artist.  My friend and I gathered closer to the radio, and they played Mr. Brownstone.  I thought the music was ok, but then the vocals started, and I thought for a minute that it must be a joke -- some sort of novelty thing like Weird Al.  Sadly, no.  If I still listened to music on the radio, GNR would be one of two bands (the Doors being the other) that would make me change the station instantly.  Cannot stand that band or anything they've ever done.  How they managed to become a "hall of fame" band on the strength of what?  Three albums and an EP?  Is just baffling to me.
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Offline hefdaddy42

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Appetite easily.

I like BIB, but I have heard it so many times.  Not to mention the fact that all of the songs kind of sound the same.
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Offline nick_z

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Appetite, for sure.

Back in Black is a classic, and I enjoy it greatly, but Appetite is actually one of my all-time favorite albums. Love everything in it, from the mega-hits to the deeper cuts.

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Appetite all the way.  Back in Black is so played out, while Appetite can still sound fresh. 

Offline bosk1

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Neither?  :dunno:
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Offline Melphina

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Tough call, but I think for me it comes down to variety in this case, and Appetite simply has more variety. Both albums have killer songs from start to finish, but Appetite has more distinct, unique riffs from one song to the next, as well as more varied vocal lines, and Axl Rose sounds like three or four different people across the whole record. The vocal melodies are pretty cool, too. It's hard to write a real catchy melody for a hook, doubly so for the verses, and both bands managed to do it for every song on their respective albums. Both are timeless. I also think the lyrical themes are in Appetite's favor. Back In Black is very much a meat and potatoes rock and roll record about hot chicks, rock'n'roll, and all that. Appetite's got a bit more depth in that regard, to me.

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Back in Black was a definitive record for a legendary band, as well as one that turned me into who and what I am today. Appetite is a steaming pile of shit. Frankly, pg1067's assessment of GnR is far too generous.
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Offline Puppies_On_Acid

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I like reading how many songs are average on Back in Black. Every song was on the radio when it came out.

Not many albums could boast about that.
Boston's self titled album! :metal
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Online kingshmegland

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I like reading how many songs are average on Back in Black. Every song was on the radio when it came out.

Not many albums could boast about that.
Boston's self titled album! :metal

Yup .  Led Zep IV & The Cars Self titled as well.
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Offline KevShmev

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I like reading how many songs are average on Back in Black. Every song was on the radio when it came out.

Not many albums could boast about that.
Boston's self titled album! :metal

Yup .  Led Zep IV & The Cars Self titled as well.

Not to mention The Dark Side of the Moon.

Online kingshmegland

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Yup.  May be a few more or close. (9 of 11 ect)

Those albums deserve to be put up on a pedestal. 
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Offline cfmoran13

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Gotta go with Appetite.  For me, I think it comes down to timeline.  BiB was a little before I was into harder rock.  I was only 7 at the time.  So, I found this album probably 3-4 years later.  With Appetite, I can remember when the album came out and getting it on vinyl.  That album is much more engrained in my memory.  And, I like it more overall.

Offline Stadler

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For me, this is the biggest no brainer in the history of no-brainers.

I don't LOVE BIB.  Bells, Shoot, the title track and Shook are all really good, fun songs.  However, AC/DC has a very bluesy side that doesn't appeal to me.  However,...

GNR is pretty much the worst band ever.  I will never forget the day I first heard the band.  In the '70s and early '80s, southern California had two MAJOR rock stations:  KLOS and KMET.  These were huge AOR stations that played all the best rock music.  Jim Ladd was a staple on KMET.  By the mid-'80s, however, those stations were softening their format big time and, by early 1987, KMET changed to a new age station.  In early 1986, a station called KNAC converted to an all-hard rock and metal format that it dubbed "Pure Rock."  This was THE radio station of my early adult days.

Anyway, I was at work (Baskin Robbins at a mall) sometime during the middle part of 1987, and the DJ was saying that he or she was going to play a song by this great new artist.  My friend and I gathered closer to the radio, and they played Mr. Brownstone.  I thought the music was ok, but then the vocals started, and I thought for a minute that it must be a joke -- some sort of novelty thing like Weird Al.  Sadly, no.  If I still listened to music on the radio, GNR would be one of two bands (the Doors being the other) that would make me change the station instantly.  Cannot stand that band or anything they've ever done.  How they managed to become a "hall of fame" band on the strength of what?  Three albums and an EP?  Is just baffling to me.

I get that we like what we like, but of all the sort of "new", "young" bands that have made the HoF in their first year or so - Green Day, Foo Fighters, etc. - who I also am baffled by, I have seen GnR back in the day, and they are a step above when it comes to the live experience.    I've frequently written about the vibe and attitude of seeing them live back in 80's and 90's.  It was just different.  It was, for lack of a better word, "dangerous". It was one of a handful of shows I've ever seen where the music felt... alive.  It felt dynamic.  It felt like there was something more going on than just a guy fingering notes and singing words.   It's almost impossible to put into words, but it's real (I've written about feeling the same thing at a Page and Plant concert, where I almost felt like I was in a trance). 

EDIT:  Oh, and I saw the Chinese Democracy club tour, and Axl gave one of the best vocal performances I've ever heard.  Three hours, sang the whole show (except for a handful of solo spots) and in the moment sounded excellent.
« Last Edit: July 09, 2021, 09:46:45 AM by Stadler »

Offline pg1067

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GNR is pretty much the worst band ever.

the vocals started, and I thought for a minute that it must be a joke

Cannot stand that band or anything they've ever done.  How they managed to become a "hall of fame" band on the strength of what?  Three albums and an EP?  Is just baffling to me.

Frankly, pg1067's assessment of GnR is far too generous.

 :lol :lol :lol
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Offline KevShmev

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I get that we like what we like, but of all the sort of "new", "young" bands that have made the HoF in their first year or so - Green Day, Foo Fighters, etc. - who I also am baffled by, I have seen GnR back in the day, and they are a step above when it comes to the live experience.    I've frequently written about the vibe and attitude of seeing them live back in 80's and 90's.  It was just different.  It was, for lack of a better word, "dangerous". It was one of a handful of shows I've ever seen where the music felt... alive.  It felt dynamic.  It felt like there was something more going on than just a guy fingering notes and singing words.   It's almost impossible to put into words, but it's real (I've written about feeling the same thing at a Page and Plant concert, where I almost felt like I was in a trance). 

Fear that the lead singer could hurl himself into the crowd and incite a riot definitely can add a "dangerous" vibe to a rock concert. ;)

Offline nick_z

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I get that we like what we like, but of all the sort of "new", "young" bands that have made the HoF in their first year or so - Green Day, Foo Fighters, etc. - who I also am baffled by, I have seen GnR back in the day, and they are a step above when it comes to the live experience.    I've frequently written about the vibe and attitude of seeing them live back in 80's and 90's.  It was just different.  It was, for lack of a better word, "dangerous". It was one of a handful of shows I've ever seen where the music felt... alive.  It felt dynamic.  It felt like there was something more going on than just a guy fingering notes and singing words.   It's almost impossible to put into words, but it's real (I've written about feeling the same thing at a Page and Plant concert, where I almost felt like I was in a trance). 

EDIT:  Oh, and I saw the Chinese Democracy club tour, and Axl gave one of the best vocal performances I've ever heard.  Three hours, sang the whole show (except for a handful of solo spots) and in the moment sounded excellent.

I'm not really sure about the HoF, and that's probably not very important anyway...but as far as I'm concerned GnR captured lighting in a bottle with Appetite. It's just an incredible set of songs, and I always felt there was so much more going on musically than with a lot of their peers in that "scene". The arrangements, the interplay between the guitars, the drumming that just fit so perfectly...it feels like songs that were brewed to perfection.

I also agree (at least with those that do like Appetite!  ;D) that Appetite is the reason they became who they became. Lies! is a cool EP. Then Use Your Illusion - I mean, my 14-year old self was as excited as anyone when the UYIs came out, but whether you like them or not (I'm in the pretty common "they could have made a much better single album" camp), they almost sounded like a different band (minus the vocals). And after that, well, there is nothing else, really. Chinese Democracy is, quite obviously, an Axl solo record -  a fascinating one, perhaps, but that's what it is.

Just out of curiosity - those who really hate Appetite: is it mostly the vocals, or you think the the songs are overall just not good?

Online TAC

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Fear that the lead singer could hurl himself into the crowd and incite a riot definitely can add a "dangerous" vibe to a rock concert. ;)

Actually it was a fear that Axl would stop a show at any moment and freak out, which he was famous for.

I saw them a bunch of times back in the day and that only happened once.


EDIT:  Oh, and I saw the Chinese Democracy club tour,

Oh, and I saw the Appetite club tour. ;D



I'm not really sure about the HoF, and that's probably not very important anyway...but as far as I'm concerned GnR captured lighting in a bottle with Appetite. It's just an incredible set of songs, and I always felt there was so much more going on musically than with a lot of their peers in that "scene". The arrangements, the interplay between the guitars, the drumming that just fit so perfectly...it feels like songs that were brewed to perfection.

It's almost a perfect hard rock album. 
would have thought the same thing but seeing the OP was TAC i immediately thought Maiden or DT related
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Offline v_clortho

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Appetite has "rocket queen". Close call but that gets my vote.

Offline Stadler

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Fear that the lead singer could hurl himself into the crowd and incite a riot definitely can add a "dangerous" vibe to a rock concert. ;)

Actually it was a fear that Axl would stop a show at any moment and freak out, which he was famous for.

I saw them a bunch of times back in the day and that only happened once.

It wasn't that specific.   Slash was obviously wasted, as was Duff...  it was just all over the map, and held together with duct tape and bailing wire, but it was GOOD. 

Offline pg1067

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Just out of curiosity - those who really hate Appetite: is it mostly the vocals, or you think the the songs are overall just not good?

It's MOSTLY the vocals.  I don't mind Paradise City, but even that song gets repetitive.  For me, the music is mediocre, generic, bluesy hard rock, and that sort of thing doesn't appeal to me even when it's done well.*  I also couldn't stand the band's image.  I saw them once live, and it was quite meh, but they were opening for the Rolling Stones at the LA Coliseum, so I doubt it was particularly representative of the band.

* - Caveat:  I looked at the track list, and there are at least four songs I've never heard, so my comments are limited to the "hits."
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Offline Lowdz

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I was at the Monsters of Rock festival at Donington where Guns played, having just become huge in the UK. I was down at the front and spent the first three songs trying not to die (3 people did die in the crush as people surged towards the stage). I spent the next few songs passing people over my head to the stewards at the front to get them out of the crush. It was the most scared Iíve ever been. There were times my feet werenít on the floor and you just got carried where the surge went.


Offline Cool Chris

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I liked GnRs hits, but never bothered to deep dive in to Appetite, or any of their other albums. I thought Axl came across as a douche, but his vocals never bothered me any.

My mom, who never liked anything heavier than Neil Diamond or Rod Stewart, loved Paradise City.
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Offline Stadler

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If there's any knock about Appetite, it's that it's two songs two long.     But side one is solid as a rock, and side two, except for My Michelle (a true story, by the way) and maybe Anything Goes, side two is good, too.  Rocket Queen? C'mon. 

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BIB by light years.

But I don't see any equivalence of these two albums except for being in the same decade.

They're 7 years apart. One is a highlight of a career that built fundamental building blocks of heavy rock arrangement, and a milestone in music production, the other is, erm, GnR. Guh... They had some great riffs and leads but the whole badass posturing and attitude bugs me so much it hurts. And Axl's vocals...
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