REVIEW / Slash & The Conspirators - ‘Living The Dream’ A seriously underrated songwriter

The 3rd studio album from Slash ft. Myles Kennedy & The Conspiratos
posted 17 September 2018 09:03am updated 17 September 2018 11:23pm

Slash Living The Dream Review

Living The Dream Review

Slash & The Conspirators Review

WHEN you look back at Slash’s long career as a godlike Gibson guitar wielding maniac, it’s easy to see why he’s revered as one of the greatest guitar players to ever grace the dark and seedy world of rock and roll. His iconic image, that jet black top hat resting on monstrous waves of hair, those demonic dark aviators covering his soul, and that beautiful 59 Les Paul glistening in the stage lighting. Whether you’re a fan of his work or not, you cannot deny the impact he’s had on rock music since starting out with Guns & Roses back in 1985.

Despite his incredible guitar skills, there’s a very key aspect of Slash that everyone seems to completely miss, it’s an aspect of Slash as a musician that has been the most consistent part of who he is as a guitar player, it’s his ability to write incredible songs. People look at Slash and see him as an amazing lead guitar player, which of course he is. But look at his solo work starting out from Slash’s Snakepit in 1994, The first lineup of the band consisted of Slash & two of his Guns N' Roses bandmates, drummer Matt Sorum and guitarist Gilby Clarke. The debut album, ‘It's Five O'Clock Somewhere’ was an incredibly raw and honest rock and roll record and highlighted the diversity of Slash’s songwriting skills.
He then went on to play with pretty much anyone he could, including the famous stint with Michael Jackson at the 1995 MTV music awards. The follow-up album from Slash’s Snakepit, ‘Ain’t Life Grand’ in 2010 followed the same pattern of well written hard rock music.

Jump forward to his first full Solo project in 2010 with his self-titled album featuring a wide variety of artists including Ian Astbury (The Cult), Ozzy Osbourne, Chris Cornell, Lemmy Kilmister, and even Iggy Pop and Kid Rock. This is probably one of the most diverse rock and roll albums to have been released in the last 20 years, there’s not a filler on it. It’s all out balls to the wall hard rock.
This naturally pushed Slash in the direction of forming a new band which turned out to be Slash ft. Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators, releasing their debut album in 2012, ‘Apocalyptic Love’. Another diverse rock record that showcases Slash’s talent for songwriting. We then see even further progress as a songwriter with the second Conspirators record, ‘World On Fire’ in 2014. Two incredible songs from this record really highlight Slash’s talent for touting a good riff, ‘Too Far Gone’ and ‘Withered Delilah’ are probably two of the best tracks he’s ever written.

I always planned on getting back together with the Conspirators as soon as possible, and continuing on with what we started, - Slash says

Then we come onto the 3rd studio album from Slash ft. Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators, ‘Living The Dream’. Take the first single from the record, ‘Mind Your Manners’, a powerful riff driven upbeat hard rock reprisal, and if the riff at 2 minutes in doesn’t make your hair stand on end then you don't deserve to listen to rest of the record. That one little guitar lick that he plays faster than the speed of light is a very short, but pivotal insight into the development of Slash’s guitar playing.

Well I mean we started a lot of the songs, a lot of the ideas originated when we were on the road for ‘World on Fire’ so that was like 2014/2015 and then everything stalled because I went into Guns N Roses and then about a year and a half after that...we got back together this year [2018] and so we sort of revisited those original ideas and then plus wrote a bunch of new ones - Slash says

Living The Dream is probably the most cohesive record Slash has written with The Conspirators, it’s good to see some classic elements of Slash’s playing style being captured on this record, as well as the overall development of the bands sound in its entirety. Slash is not only an amazingly accomplished guitar player, but he’s an extremely creative songwriter, and that aspect seems to go largely unnoticed, he rarely seems to get credit for this in interviews.

He’s also attributed his development to his bandmates and producer Michael “Elvis” Baskette who also produced ‘World On Fire’.

Living The Dream is an outstanding showcase of classic hard rock, powerful riffs, and wildly outrageous octaves. Check out Slash’s Snakepit if you haven’t already.

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