25 Years Ago: Guns N' Roses & Metallica Began Their Disastrous Tour

July 17, 2017

When Nirvana chose not to tour with Metallica and Guns N' Roses, they would have made one of the smartest decisions in the band's career. Because on July 17th, 1992, Faith No More took Nirvana's opening spot, only to realize that that was a big mistake. Because the tour was cursed with Murphy's law as almost everything that could have gone wrong, did.

Neither band could have imagined the events that transpired when they were feeling completely on top of their game. Metallica's Black Album Metallica was skyrocketing up the charts, and Guns N' Roses were touring in support of their double albums Use Your Illision I and II. But with Metallica carrying around so much pyro, and GNR's unpunctuality and excessive vice consumption, both bands came to learn some valuable lessons at the tour's conclusion.

To say that Metallica and Guns N' Roses didn't exactly get along would have been an understatement. Metallica wasn't very fond of Axl Rose's diva-like behavior, making fun of his requests in his rider form, as well as him abruptly leaving the stage mid-show after vomiting and damaging his vocal chords which lead to three rescheduled dates. 

Things didn't get much better from there. On August 8th at the Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Canada, James Hetfield suffered second and third degree burns to his body after standing on one of the pyrotechnic grates. They were forced to end the show in order to get James to the hospital.

Now when something as serious as this happens, one would expect Guns N' Roses to rise to the occaison and rectify the concert. But after a three-hour breakdown of the set, sound issues, and Axl ending the show early due to a sore throat, things spiraled into pure chaos. A riot of angry and agitated concert goers ensued outside where fires were started, cars were flipped, windows were smashed, and stores were looted.

After rescheduling six dates for James to receive medical attention, Metallica returned to the stage on August 25th at the Phoenix Interantional Raceway in Avondale, AZ where his left arm was wrapped in bandages, preventing him from playing guitar. To fill in, they brought in John Marshall of Metal Church (who was also a tech for Metallica) to play rhythm guitar in Hetfield's place.

At this point Faith No More wanted out of the tour. Lead singer Mike Patton even planned on leaving a bowel movement on Axl's vid monitor. But before he could have the satisfaction, Faith No More was kicked off from the tour by GNR and were replaced by Ice-T's band Body Count for all but the last three remaining tour dates. Motörhead would come in to open during the last three shows.

Now with the tour finally over, nothing else could possibly happen, right? Wrong. Duff McKagan's family and friends formed an intervention due to his substance abuse, and he left for rehab. Although there were many cancelled tour dates, Metallica managed to walk away with an impressive bank statement. Unfortunately, Guns N' Roses didn't meet the same payday as they took home only twenty-percend of the cash they were expected to earn from the tour. According to Slash's memoir, he cited the band being fined for every time they were late onstage, as well as all of the money Axl blew on incredibly lavish parties being thrown backstage.

(source: Loudwire)