Guns N' Roses' attempted comeback has hit a snag, said Tom Breihan in Pitchfork. A German "electronic shoegaze" artist—Ulrich Schnauss—is suing for $1 million, saying that Guns N' Roses "samples unlicensed chunks" of his music (listen here and here) on a track from the band's Chinese Democracy album. And "if you listen to all three songs, it's a pretty tough claim to dispute."
Schnauss and his record labels, Domino and Independiente, "are going to have their work cut out for them in proving their case," said Daniel Kreps in Rolling Stone. The Guns N' Roses song in question, Riad N' the Bedouins (listen), "shares no resemblance to Schnauss' body of work." On top of that, "half the stuff on Chinese Democracy has existed for the better part of the last decade, while the two Schnauss songs came out in 2001 and 2003, so it'd be practically impossible to determine" who was first.
Who cares? said Peter Kafka in All Things Digital. Musicians accuse each other of stealing all the time. But this lawsuit is more than a little ironic: Guns N' Roses "made a point of stringing up people who pirated its last album." Schnauss should have gone after GNR "last fall, when there was a biggish to-do about the album," and when the band was "siccing the federal government on bloggers" for posting unathorized samples from the album.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- China's leader is telling the People's Liberation Army to prepare for war
- The religious right isn't retreating — it's reforming
- How I lost all my money
- How academia's liberal bias is killing social science
- Diagnosing the Home Alone burglars' injuries: A professional weighs in
- Why Pakistan won't hunt down the terrorists within its borders
- 10 things you need to know today: December 22, 2014
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- A brief history of the Christmas present
Subscribe to the Week