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Smaller Is Better For Velvet Revolver

Of the Oakland Press

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The last time Velvet Revolver rolled through town, it was for a near-capacity turnout at the DTE Energy Music Theatre.

But guitarist Slash says there’s no sense of comedown to be playing the considerably smaller Fillmore Detroit this weekend.

“I don’t think we were 100 percent comfortable playing the arena-sized places,” says Slash (real name Saul Hudson), 42, who co-founded Velvet Revolver with fellow Guns N’ Roses alumni Duff McKagan and Matt Sorum, former Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland

and guitarist Dave Kushner.

“There’s just something about this band that’s so funky, and it’s really hard to get in touch with that in those big places. It’s flattering to be able to play them and stuff, but I think the band feels more comfortable, at this point in time, just playing to an audience you can really sort of see, touch and smell.”

Slash says the group has scaled down its show a bit, as well, to “a reasonably lengthened rock set” that includes material from Velvet Revolver’s two albums — 2004’s “Contraband” and last year’s “Libertad” — as well as material from the members’ previous bands. And, he says, new material is on the way, although the group won’t be playing any of it at its shows. But the group does plan to hit the studio in April, after it finishes touring, to start work on its third album.

“That’s the big thing right now,” notes Slash, who published an autobiography last fall and is also planning to record a solo album at some point in the near future. “I’ve been working on new ideas, and we’ve had a couple times where the guys all got together and worked on some stuff.

“I’m itching to see what this third record’s gonna be, ’cause I think it’s gonna be ... awesome. Wherever we’re at (now) is definitely far and away beyond where we were a year ago, and we’re gonna go explore that.”

Velvet Revolver performs at 8 p.m. Saturday (Jan. 26) at the Fillmore Detroit, 2115 Woodward Ave., Detroit. Tickets are $59.50 and $45. Call (313) 961-5450 or visit www.livenation.com.

Web Site: www.livenation.com

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