Aussie rock gods AC/DC are making a triumphant return to the airwaves next week with their 17th studio album; their first since the loss of band co-founder Malcolm Young in 2017. Entitled Power Up the new record will also feature the comeback of lead singer Brian Johnson who had stepped down during a tour in 2016 due to hearing loss (and somewhat bizarrely had been temporarily replaced by Gun’s & Roses lead singer Axl Rose).
For fans, this new album is a classic, a rock n’ roll drenched monolith in the ‘take no prisoners’ style and attitude that made them famous since the mid 70s. Reconnecting with their roots was reportedly the late Malcolm’s idea – tired of “bubblegum pop and Tik Tok”, he wanted to produce something that was all grit, rock drums and guitar licks.
The result is an impressive return to form with new songs interspersed with older song ideas that had previously been worked on by Malcolm and the band.
“We’ve managed to get back what the world has known as AC/DC since 1980 when [first singer] Bon Scott passed away,” stated Angus Young in a recent interview. The band had to overcome huge adversity to produce ‘Power Up’ – not only did guitarist and co-founder Malcolm Young die, but bassist Cliff Richard retired, drummer Phil Rudd went to prison for drug possession, and singer Brian Johnson almost lost his hearing.
It seemed virtually impossible for AC/DC to ever rise again – yet this year’s global pandemic brought them all back together to “bring across the sheer power of rock that other music can’t reach. It’s just good to have a nice shot of rock’n’roll.” Miraculously, Johnson’s hearing was mended by a fan and scientist, Stephen Ambrose, who had created a patented hearing device to restore damaged ear drums. The two men met when Ambrose put a petition out on YouTube to get through to AC/DC front man – the plea eventually went viral and the rest is history.
Power Up will be released on November 13 and with it rockstars hope to re-inspire a generation of disheartened current and future musicians to learn the craft and pass on the rock mantle forward. In the meantime – we can enjoy the album’s teaser trailer, featuring a clip of the song ‘Demon Fire’ and a characteristically devilish backdrop.
Rock n Roll lives.
UP NEXT: Rubble to Ritz….