I love how people think old Smashing Pumpkins was a total group effort. It's ALWAYS been Billy's band, with others playing guitar, bass, and drums.
That's sort of how I feel about Guns N' Roses. Axl was always the songwriter. As good as Slash, Duff etc... were, you can really get any asshole on stage to play guitar solos.
Personally I think Chinese Democracy was a decent album. But it's flaws are not due to a lack of Slash, they are due to Axl being crazy.