Auditorio Parque Juan Carlos I, Madrid, Spain
May 25th 2006

Kim Richardson's Review

Just stepped off the plane from Madrid and yes, all those UK dates are printed on the tour T-shirts, so it must be true. I can't wait! The Madrid show was electrifying - deceptively simple stage set-up and lighting - absolutely no gimmicks. It really looks like this tour will be about the musicians and the music. GNR went on just after midnight and finished around 2.30 am. It was a lovely warm evening, the atmosphere was one of good-natured anticipation and excitement and I saw no displays of annoyance at the wait - more drinkin' and chillin' time!

GNR themselves were relaxed and having fun. As for Axl, the only word to describe his mood was 'playful'. How else can I describe it after hearing him sing a snatch of the old Phil Spector classic, To Know Him Is To Love Him (this while at the piano before NR), James Brown's, I Feel Good, and, wait for it, The Teddy Bears' Picnic (presumably because the we were in the park)! All felt slightly surreal, I can tell you.

For the ladies among you, Axl looks and moves like sex on legs. He wore the same casual clothes (jeans and leather shirt) he wore in New York; again getting down to his white socks for the encore (always reminds me of the early shows when he does that). His voice sounded better and stronger than ever - I think it was the last note of I Feel Good where he really went for it - much to the crowd's enjoyment and appreciation.

Band chemistry was clearly in evidence; Richard in particular was giving it his all and then some. Oh, and not to forget the old ivory tickler himself, Mr Dizwald Reed, who plays like his soul depends on it.

I won't go on anymore because although I haven't checked the forums, I bet that there have already been better reviews posted than I could do right now. Feeling pretty knackered actually as I'm still getting over a cold bug I picked up in NY - cheers guys, I really wanted that as an added bonus! :)

To anyone with tickets to any show on this tour, I guarantee that you are not going to be disappointed. I saw the 02 shows and have to confess that I had my doubts then, but this is truely different; this time Axl and the lads are doing it for real. All over Europe will be the sound of media/press jaws hitting the floor and fans basking in the quiet satisfaction of knowing that their long years of hoping and believing have paid off big style.