With debate still raging over whether Axl is a legend or a moron, and the band bottled off stage in Dublin this week, we're taking a look at both sides of the story. First up, the big man himself justifies his actions at Reading. Then Chad Elliott, from one of the weekend's big draws Funeral Party lets rip...
“Our start times at the Reading and Leeds festivals factually had nothing to do with us as the previous bands (who were great by the way) came off stage when they did and we went on within our contracted and documented changeover time period. Whatever other nonsense anyone's choosing to write would appear intentionally false."
"Having the fans or our show penalized for how the event was run, or simply the natural flow of events those evenings, and for such minimal amount of overtime along with distortions and falsehoods by media, the promoter and / or event organizers regarding the events seems a bit draconian and more than unfair to the fans.
A simple question: If you are aware of our changeover time, the average length of our show and the general nature of how these types of festivals run all of which are no big secrets, why book us?
Is it simply because the lineup on our nights at both festivals sold well? So it's a cash grab with no respect for the fans or the band and somehow an unwanted inconvenience for the cities and law enforcement? If we're not wanted and just being used to line someone else's pockets or for fictitious tabloid fodder at the fans and our expense we're fine with going elsewhere. God forbid we would force ourselves on anyone. It's not that kinda party.”
The fans react at Reading:
Funeral Party's Chad Elliott responds:
"The whole thing is typical of Axl. I’ve heard about their older stuff and Axl acting out and I’ve seen clips of him throwing the mic off stage and getting into fights with audiences so I wasn’t really shocked. I ended up missing the whole thing. I wasn’t waiting that long so I went to go watch Phoenix instead.
Them getting booed on stage was kind of funny, and they kept playing, which I thought was kind of hilarious. They’re just from a certain generation. To be honest with you, I always used to think Axl – and all his craziness - was kind of cool, until I heard that he got beat up by Tommy Hilfiger. Then it just kind of died out for me. I was like ‘Oh, you got beat up by Tommy Hilfiger, Axl. Yeah, you’re not cool any more.’
Don’t get me wrong, Funeral Party have been known to be late on stage - I mean our whole band is a bit late to most things - but not like that. I don’t want to get booed offstage. It’s a little prima donna-ish how Axl treats his fans. I mean, we played with Slash and he’s got his shit together, so why Axl can’t, I don’t know. Maybe his dreads are too tight."