First off, great to see the start of a new tour so close to the end of the last! But as usual with GN'R, the first show in the tour wasn't very good . It definitely had its good parts, but too many bad parts. The band overall was for the most part good, as far as I could tell from the Youtube stream. Dj jazzed up his solo which was really nice to see, I wish the other members would follow suit, it's getting a bit boring now. Dj also played generally very well, I liked his solos on Estranged. After a run through the crowd on Nightrain it seems his guitar died and he started smashing it, so Bumbles and Richard had to finish the song alone.
Bumbles fumbled on the Welcome solo because he was wearing a stormtrooper helmet that kept falling down so he couldn't see. He seemed frustrated but it was funny to watch. Another nice episode was Axl bringing Beta, her sister and her father out on stage.
Axl struggled a lot in the beginning and throughout the show at some songs. What was a bit discouraging is that he was off key at times. This is not common for him. But for the most part his main problem was getting the raspiness into his voice and sustaining tones. It was uncomfortable listening to him go from a low raspy voice into a thin high voice whenever he needed to belt tones. It wasn't as bad as in 2002, but definitely gave me deja vu. In addition he also forget the lyrics here and there, which obviously bothered him, especially at the end of November Rain where he stopped singing altogether (thanks for Bumbles for pulling the solos off instead). Axl did very well on some songs, though, like Patience, Estranged, Knockin' and even Nightrain. So, all in all, not a good performance by Axl, but sadly this is expected at the first show of a new tour. He'll probably do better in November...
The show wasn't as long as expected, but I guess the extreme downpour (it was hazardous at times) and Axl's voice problems explains that. Musical highlight was definitely Estranged where the whole band, including Axl, did very well. Fantastic to hear an old favourite again, and thanks to the band for listening to the fans' request. I heard the crowd chant 'Coma', so I guess that is the next old-timer the band has to pull out.
So, all in all an average to poor show. If Axl can find back his late 2010 voice then the rest of the tour will be better and there's no reason to not assume that will happen