GUNS N' ROSES and SIXX: A.M. guitarist Daren Jay "DJ" Ashba was interviewed on the June 1 edition of "The Louvau Show" on the 93.9 KWSS radio station. You can now listen to the chat using the SoundCloud widget below. (Note: The Ashba interview begins around the 18-minute mark.)
Asked about GUNS N' ROSES' improved track record of going on stage on time in the last few months of touring the world, Ashba said: "The last year we've been going on pretty much dead-on. Axl [Rose, GUNS N' ROSES singer] has made a very big point to be on stage on time. It's funny, 'cause it's nothing that media races out and reports. They tend to get the bigger hits when they have something negative to report. So you don't really hear about that so much. But yeah, I've been really happy. Everybody has been really on it, and the fans are happy, and it's really cool."
Ashba also spoke about the physical demands of a GUNS N' ROSES performance, calling it a "a super-high-adrenaline show. Like, we are running for three solid hours up there and playing our asses off. It takes its toll on your body, for sure. We're basically doing the equivalent of two shows in one, kind of."
He continued: "I remember we played a festival and we only played, like, an hour and a half, and it seemed so short. When I got off stage, I was, like, 'Wow. That's pretty much a normal show length for most bands.' It's just weird when you're so used to doing three-hour shows, your body is just used to that [physical demand]. So it's kind of weird when we do a festival and have to play half the time, which is still a long show."
Ashba was also asked if he thinks three guitarists are really necessary to perform the GUNS N' ROSES material live. "I don't," he admitted. "I don't, but I get it. Could two of us pull off those songs? Absolutely. But I think what's cool, and where Axl is coming from is he wants it to sound like the record; Axl is very big on that. You know, everybody that's ever made a record, usually there's more than two guitar tracks on a song; you've got rhythms and lead and overdubs. So it's kind of cool, 'cause everybody… [Axl has] really put together an incredible pool of musicians. He handpicked everybody in this band and I'm honored to be a part of it. Everybody in this band is top-notch players. So, yeah, could two of us do it? Of course. But to me, we can do all the bells and whistles and put the icing on the cake as well, and we don't have to put anything on… You know what I mean?! It's like we play. And it sounds very authentic that way, I think. We can really make it sound like the record, like a really cool live experience for people."
Regarding whether there are any concrete plans for the current lineup of GUNS N' ROSES to go into the studio and record new music, Ashba said: "Of course, before I joined the band, there's two more albums' worth of songs that already had been recorded and Axl's played me a part of it. It's great stuff. I can't wait. I think we're gonna tear into it. And, of course, I'm a songwriter and producer, and I have 13 or 14 brand new songs, and everybody kind of has their own songs. So lack of songs really isn't the problem. It's… To be honest, we've been touring so hardcore since I've been in the band — we've been around the world four or five times in the last five years — so it's just a matter of, really, 'Hey, let's stop touring for a bit and put together what we feel.. Let's sift through [all] the songs and song ideas and put together what we feel is gonna be the next best GUNS N' ROSES record."
Rose hinted in a rare new interview with Revolver magazine that a follow-up to the 2008 album "Chinese Democracy" could be in the works. Rose explained, "We recorded a lot of things before 'Chinese' was out. We've worked more on some of those things and we've written a few new things. But basically, we have what I call kind of the second half of 'Chinese'. That's already recorded. And then we have a remix album made of the songs from 'Chinese'. That's been done for a while, too."
Rose added that after the band finishes its current residency at the Hard Rock Hotel And Casino in Las Vegas, "We're going to start looking very seriously at what we're doing in that regard."
GUNS N' ROSES will release "Appetite For Democracy 3D: Live From The Hard Rock Casino - Las Vegas" on July 1 via Universal Music Enterprises. The show was filmed on November 21, 2012 during the "Appetite For Democracy" tour in celebration of the 25th anniversary of GUNS' classic 1987 debut, "Appetite For Destruction", as well as four years of touring behind 2008's "Chinese Democracy".