Axl Rose Denies 'Intentionally Disrespecting' Fans

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[Credit: Jimmy James/Camera Press/Retna]
WRITTEN BY
SPIN Staff

Axl Rose has a well-earned reputation for being tardy to the party, so when Guns N' Roses 4.0 arrived onstage at Brazil's massive Rock in Rio festival later than scheduled earlier this month, the frontman took most of the heat. In fact, the event's organizer lambasted Rose and Co. for starting their set two hours late, saying his belated start showed a "lack of commitment" and a similar lack of "respect for the public."

The band's first response was an awesome Facebook posting that proclaimed, "Love it Hate it Accept it Debate it — You want 8 o'clock shows go find F-R-I-E-N-D-S or hit a cinema somewhere.. or you wanna be informed go catch the 10-o'clock news.. this is Rock N' Roll!" But a fresh statement from the band (via Blabbermouth) likely penned by someone other than Rose places the blame on the fest and opener System of a Down.

"GUNS N' ROSES would like to set the record straight on Rock In Rio. The festival's inadequate production and the downpour of rain delayed the event. Anyone who was there knows that SYSTEM OF A DOWN did not leave the stage until close to 1:15 in the morning. SYSTEM's extensive stage production did not finish coming offstage until 1:45 a.m. GN'R's production was up and ready to go at 2:15 a.m. Axl got to the venue before 1 a.m. and he came ready to go onstage. The inadequate cover of the Rock In Rio stage caused a further delay when the soundboard went down due to water damage and was replaced as quick as possible. GN'R walked onstage at 2:40 a.m. and played for two-and-a-half hours in the pouring rain. GN'R would never seek to intentionally disrespect anyone, especially their fans."

GN'R may have been late — and Axl Rose may have been looking reall puffy — but the band delivered the first performance of "Estranged"from Use Your Illusion II in 18 years. Plus, Rose will have plenty of time to make amends when his band finally tours behind Chinese Democracy in the states this fall.

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