Long before Axl Rose welcomed us to the jungle with Guns N' Roses, the screaming frontman was ready to rumble with a little-known outfit called Rapidfire.
A 1983 demo Rose recorded with guitarist Kevin Lawrence, bassist Mike Hamernik and drummer Chuck Gordon has turned up online. The foursome, known as Rapidfire, won a battle of the bands at the late Sunset Strip heavy-metal haven Gazzarri's. And, now Lawrence has made part of a demo the band recorded available to the public, Consequence of Sound reports.
Titled "Ready to Rumble," the 54-second clip is of historical significance to the Guns N' Roses story since it was recorded on May 25, 1983, just three days before Axl reunited with his childhood friend and future GN'R bandmate Izzy Stadlin at Rapidfire's final Gazzarri's gig, and left the band to form GN'R forerunner Hollywood Rose.
While the band sounds like generic metal — complete with Twisted Sister "I Wanna Rock"-like backing vocals — there's no mistaking Axl's howl, which appeared to be fully formed before GN'R.
The release of the clip was accompanied by a 35-page history of the band penned by Lawrence's lawyer, Joshua Solomon, in which he explains the band's formation, dissolution and the legalities surrounding the release of the recording.
"The five songs I described are not available to the public," Solomon writes. "There is no website you can visit to download them. There are no CDs waiting to be shipped. Then again, that could change."
In closing, he asks for fans to "speak up and speak out about what you would like to have happen. Kevin and I will listen and see what we can do.”
So, what do you think? Do we need more Rapidfire, or is it best left in the rock 'n' roll dustbin?