In the late 80s, pop music was taking over the world and was even infiltrating heavy metal, spawning a long line of "nice" hard rockers, like Bon Jovi and Def Leppard. The phrase "bubblegum metal" was becoming a disturbing reality, and the Sunset Strip was being overrun with musicians concerned about which feather boa they were going to wear onstage that night. And then, cutting through the frilliness and glitter like a knife dipped in cigarette ash, the opening notes of "Welcome to the Jungle" came to singlehandedly reinvigorate the hard rock scene. Since then, Guns N Roses' albums have sold more than 1 million copies and the reverberations of their influence can still be felt in modern rock music. Perhaps no band since Aerosmith had a duo has charismatic as Axl Rose and Slash. With a rhythm section as strong as they come (Izzy Stradlin remains one of the most underrated guitarists of all time), Guns N' Roses represented a pure-yet-grimy approach to rock and roll. It was disappointing when the founding members started to fade away, because if any hard rock band from the 80s could have stood the test of the grunge explosion, it would have been the original lineup of GNR. With the band hot on the heels of a reunion, it's time to take a look back at the wealth of dynamic, dirty, and direly needed music they gave us.