12:30 PM 18th November 2020
AC/DC Are Back In Black On Power Up (Columbia)
If you are an AC/DC fan this new album will come as a big surprise.
On their last tour lead singer Brian Johnson had to bow out due to hearing problems (he has since returned to the fold after some new technology helped him to get his hearing back), drummer Phil Rudd ended up in court, resulting in doing seven months of home detention, then suffered a heart attack but is now back behind the drum kit, and bass player Cliff Williams decided to retire but has now come out of retirement.
The biggest loss to the band and the fans was Malcolm Young, rhythm guitarist - the main songwriter who co-wrote all their classic tracks. Sadly Malcolm had dementia and died in 2017 to be replaced by nephew Stevie Young. That left brother Angus Young as the only one left of the original line up.
Angus looked back through the tracks that he and Malcolm had written over the years, but which had never been recorded; the songs in question were from the recording of their 2008 album, Black Ice
. The songs from this period have now become the backbone of their new album.
Produced by former collaborator Brendan O’Brien this 12 track album is like they never have been away, especially on album opener 'Realize.'
The first single off the album 'Shot in the Dark' might have an ambiguous lyric, but there is no denying that this is AC/DC still at the top of their game. Riding on a solid bass line with a chunky guitar riff this is just what we all need after the year that was 2020.
'Through The Mists of Time' might be the record’s emotional centrepiece, being more pensive than you come to expect from the band, it sees the band in a new light.
'Demon Fire' injects a bit of boogie and blues to the mix, though the structure of the track owes a lot to their classic 'Whole Lotta Rosie'.
The album ends with 'Code Red', a track which could have come off the Back in Black
album, it is business as usual like the rest of the album.
If this is to be their final album then what a fine one to bow out on. We can only hope now for a tour when things allow, but for now - for those about to rock, we salute you.
I rate the album 4 out of 5