website security
JanEmperadors-Metalarchives "The metal encyclopedia"
                 

Go to English 1   Go to Dutch

Back to commercial success (1987–1990)

AC/DC's 1988 album, Blow Up Your Video, was recorded at Studio Miraval  in Le Val, France, and reunited the band with their original producers, Harry Vanda and George Young. The group recorded nineteen songs, choosing ten for the final release; though the album was later criticised for containing excessive "filler", it was a commercial success. Blow Up Your Video sold more copies than the previous two studio releases combined, reaching No.2 on the UK charts—AC/DC's highest position since "Back in Black" in 1980. The album featured the UK top-twenty single "Heatseeker" and popular songs such as "That's the Way I Wanna Rock 'n' Roll". The Blow Up Your Video World Tour began in February 1988, in Perth, Australia. That April, following live appearances across Europe, Malcolm Young announced that he was taking time off from touring, principally to begin recovery from his alcoholism. Another member of the Young family, Stevie Young, temporarily took Malcolm's place.

Following the tour, Wright left the group to work on the upcoming Dio album Lock Up the Wolves, and was replaced by session veteran Chris Slade

Johnson was unavailable for several months while finalising his divorce, so the Young brothers wrote all the songs for the next album, a practice they continued for all subsequent releases through Rock or Bust in 2014.

Popularity regained (1990–1994)

The next album, The Razors Edge, was recorded in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and was mixed and engineered by Mike Fraser and produced by Bruce Fairbairn, who had previously worked with Aerosmith and Bon Jovi. Released in 1990, it was a major comeback for the band, and included the hits "Thunderstruck" and "Are You Ready", which reached No.5 and No.16 respectively on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks Chart, and "Moneytalks", which peaked at No.23 on the Billboard Hot 100

The album went multi-platinum and reached the US top ten. Several shows on the Razors Edge tour were recorded for the 1992 live album, titled LiveLive was produced by Fairbairn, and is considered one of the best live albums of the 1990s. AC/DC headlined the Monsters of Rock show during this tour, which was released on DVD as Live at Donington. During The Razors Edge tour three fans were killed at a concert at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, Utah in January 1991. When the concert began fans rushed the stage crushing the three and injuring others. It took 20 minutes before venue security and the group understood the severity of the situation and stopped the concert. AC/DC settled with the victims' families out of court. As a result of this incident, the Salt Palace eliminated festival seating from future events. A year later, AC/DC recorded "Big Gun" for the soundtrack of the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie Last Action Hero, and was released as a single, reaching No.1 on the US Mainstream Rock chart, the band's first No.1 single on that chart.

Popularity confirmed (1994–2008)

In 1994, Angus and Malcolm invited Rudd to several jam sessions. He was eventually rehired to replace Slade, whose amicable departure arose in part because of the band's strong desire to again work with Rudd. Recorded at the Ocean Way Studios in Los Angeles by the reunited 1980–83 line-up and produced by Rick Rubin, Ballbreaker was released in 1995. The first single from the album was "Hard as a Rock". Two more singles were released from the album: "Hail Caesar" and "Cover You in Oil".
In 1997, a box set named 
Bonfire was released. It contained four albums; a remastered version of Back in BlackVolts (a disc with alternate takes, outtakes, and stray live cuts) and two live albums, 
Live from the Atlantic Studios and Let There Be Rock: The MovieLive from the Atlantic Studios was recorded on 7 December 1977 at the Atlantic Studios in New York. Let There Be Rock: The Movie was a double album recorded in 1979 at the Pavillon de Paris and was the soundtrack of a motion picture, AC/DC: Let There Be Rock. The US version of the box set included a colour booklet, a two-sided poster, a sticker, a temporary tattoo, a keychain bottle opener, and a guitar pick.

In 2000, the band released Stiff Upper Lip, produced by brother George Young at the Warehouse Studio, again in Vancouver. The album was better received by critics than Ballbreaker but was considered lacking in new ideas. The Australian release included a bonus disc with three promotional videos and several live performances recorded in Madrid, Spain in 1996. Stiff Upper Lip reached No.1 in five countries, including Argentina and Germany; No.2 in three countries, Spain, France and Switzerland; No.3 in Australia; No.5 in Canada and Portugal; and No.7 in Norway, the US and Hungary. The first single, "Stiff Upper Lip", remained at No.1 on the US Mainstream Rock charts for four weeks. The other singles released also did very well; "Satellite Blues" and "Safe in New York City" reached No.7 and No.31 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks, respectively.

In 2002, AC/DC signed a long-term, multi-album deal with Sony Music, who went on to release a series of remastered albums as part of their AC/DC remasters series. Each release contained an expanded booklet featuring rare photographs, memorabilia, and notes. In 2003, the entire back-catalogue (except Ballbreaker and Stiff Upper Lip) was remastered and re-released. Ballbreaker was eventually re-released in October 2005; Stiff Upper Lip was later re-released in April 2007. Also in 2003, the band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

On 30 July 2003, the band performed with the Rolling Stones and Rush at Molson Canadian Rocks for Toronto. The concert, held before an audience of half a million, was intended to help the city overcome the negative publicity stemming from the effects of a 2003 SARS epidemic. The concert holds the record for the largest paid music event in North American history. The band came second in a list of Australia's highest-earning entertainers for 2005, and sixth for 2006, despite having neither toured since 2003 nor released an album since 2000. Verizon Wireless has gained the rights to release AC/DC's full albums and the entire Live at Donington concert to download in 2008.

On 16 October 2007, Columbia Records released a double and triple DVD titled Plug Me In. The set consists of five and seven hours of rare footage, and even a recording of AC/DC at a high school performing "School Days", "TNT", "She's Got Balls", and "It's a Long Way to the Top". As with Family Jewels, disc one contains rare shows of the band with Bon Scott, and disc two is about the Brian Johnson era. The collector's edition contains an extra DVD with 21 more rare performances of both Scott and Johnson and more interviews.

AC/DC made their video game debut on Rock Band 2, with "Let There Be Rock" included as a playable track. The setlist from their Live at Donington live album was released as playable songs for the Rock Band series by means of a Wal-Mart-exclusive retail disc titled AC/DC Live: Rock Band Track Pack.

No Bull: The Directors Cut, a newly edited, comprehensive Blu-ray and DVD of the band's July 1996 Plaza De Toros de las Ventas concert in Madrid, Spain, was released on 9 September 2008.

Black Ice (2008–2011)

On 18 August 2008, Columbia Records announced 18 October Australian release, and 20 October worldwide release, of the studio album Black Ice. The 15-track album was the band's first studio release in eight years, was produced by Brendan O'Brien and was mixed and engineered by Mike Fraser. Like Stiff Upper Lip, it was recorded at The Warehouse Studio in Vancouver, British Columbia. Black Ice was sold in the US exclusively at Walmart and Sam's Club and the band's official website.

"Rock 'n' Roll Train", the album's first single, was released to radio on 28 August. On 15 August, AC/DC recorded a video for a song from the new album in London with a special selection of fans getting the chance to be in the video. Black Ice debuted at No.1 on album charts in 29 countries and also was Columbia Records' biggest debut album (since Nielsen SoundScan began tracking sales data for Billboard in March 1991). Black Ice has been certified Multi Platinum in eight countries, including the US, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, Germany and the Czech Republic. Additionally Black Ice has achieved Platinum status in twelve countries (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, UK, Argentina, Singapore and New Zealand) and Gold status in four countries (The Netherlands, Spain, Poland and Brazil). The 18-month Black Ice World Tour supporting the new album was announced on 11 September and began on 28 October in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

On 15 September 2008, AC/DC Radio debuted on Sirius Channel 19 and XM channel 53. The channel plays AC/DC music along with interviews with the band members.

With the North American release of Black Ice on 20 October 2008, Columbia Records and Walmart created "Rock Again AC/DC Stores" to promote the album. In October 2008, MTV, Walmart, and Columbia created "AC/DC Rock Band Stores" in New York City, at Times Square, and in Los Angeles. "Black Ice" trucks were also dispatched on the streets of these two cities after the release, playing AC/DC music aloud and making various stops each day to sell merchandise.

In late September 2009, the band rescheduled six shows when Brian Johnson underwent an operation for ulcers. On 29 September, the band announced a collection of studio and live rarities, Backtracks, which was released on 10 November 2009 as a 3-CD/2-DVD/1-LP box-set.

On 4 November AC/DC were announced as the Business Review Weekly top Australian earner (entertainment) for 2009 with earnings of $105 million. This displaced The Wiggles from the number one spot for the first time in four years.

On 19 April 2010, AC/DC released Iron Man 2, the soundtrack for the eponymous film. One month later, the band headlined Download Festival  at Donington Park, and closed the Black Ice World Tour in Bilbao, Spain on 28 June 2010, after 20 months in which AC/DC went to 108 cities in over 28 countries, with an estimated audience of over five million people. Three concerts in December 2009 at the River Plate Stadium in Argentina were released as the DVD Live at River Plate on 10 May 2011. An exclusive single from the DVD, featuring the songs "Shoot to Thrill" and "War Machine", was issued on Record Store Day. In 2011, the band also issued on DVD and Blu-ray the concert movie AC/DC: Let There Be Rock, which had its theatrical release in 1980.

Multiple lineup changes, Rock or Bust (2011–2016)

Angus stated in an interview in early May 2011 that the band was beginning to plan another world tour, saying, "Now we're thinking, 'How can we ever better the 'Black Ice' world tour?' But we will." At the band's Live at River Plate DVD premiere on 6 May 2011 at the Hammersmith Apollo in London, England, Angus said that there were plans for the group to release a new studio album "within the next couple of years", which the tour would support.

In May 2012, Malcolm Young confirmed that the band were working on a potential follow-up to 2008's Black Ice. But he warned that fans were in for a longer wait than expected, after lead singer Brian Johnson suggested there would be new material the next year. Malcolm stated, "You know what Brian's like. He just says things and then walks away. It'll be a little while – a year or two anyway. I've been doing some jamming on some song ideas but I do that all the time, as do the rest of the band. We are still working. But we had a long rest between Stiff Upper Lip and Black Ice, so I think we need a couple of years to recuperate and work on it a bit more."

On 19 November 2012, AC/DC released Live at River Plate, their first live album in 20 years.

Malcolm Young's retirement

On 16 April 2014, in response to earlier reports that the band may be retiring due to Malcolm Young being seriously ill and unable to perform, Brian Johnson commented that AC/DC are not retiring, stating "We are definitely getting together in May in Vancouver. We're going to pick up guitars, have a plonk and see if anybody has got any tunes or ideas. If anything happens we'll record it." AC/DC subsequently announced in an official statement on their Facebook page that Malcolm Young would be taking a break from the band due to his ill health. It ended: "The band will continue to make music." In June, Johnson announced that AC/DC are "very likely" to be on the road again before the end of 2014. In July 2014, AC/DC confirmed that they have finished recording their next album and that Malcolm's nephew, Stevie Young replaced Malcolm in the studio.

Drummer Phil Rudd released his first solo album, Head Job, on 29 August 2014. He confirmed that there would be another AC/DC tour, and stated that the band had no intention of retiring, adding, "We'll all have to be dead before it stops."

"Rock or Bust"

On 23 September 2014, Alberts management confirmed that founding member Malcolm Young had officially departed from the band and revealed that their new record entitled Rock or Bust featuring eleven new tracks would be released on 28 November 2014 as the first AC/DC album in the band's history without Malcolm Young on the recordings. The band also announced plans for a world tour to promote the new album with Malcolm and Angus' nephew Stevie Young as Malcolm's replacement.

Phil Rudd's replacement  

On 6 November 2014 Rudd was charged with attempting to procure a murder, threatening to kill, possession of methamphetamine and possession of cannabis, following a police raid on his home. The charge of attempting to procure a murder was withdrawn the following day, but the other charges remained. AC/DC released a statement clarifying that the tour promoting Rock or Bust would continue, but did not say whether or not Rudd would participate, or if he was still a member of the band.

In an interview on 13 November, Angus Young stated that the band had experienced problems with Rudd earlier in the year when recording Rock or Bust, and that his situation had taken the band by surprise. Rudd had also missed video and photo shoots, and with reference to Rudd's future in the band, Young added, "So, at this stage, it's a pretty tough call for us." He also said the band would continue: "He's got to sort himself out I think ... At this point it's kind of a question mark. But if we're touring, there will be a drummer in place, put it that way."

At the charity signing before the Grammy awards, the band was photographed together with former drummer Chris Slade. It was later confirmed that he had rejoined the band for the Grammys and upcoming tour. In April 2015, Rudd pleaded guilty to drug charges and threatening to kill a former assistant. Shortly thereafter, the band's web site removed Rudd as the band's drummer and replaced him with Slade. On 9 July 2015 Rudd was denied a discharge without conviction and sentenced to eight month's home detention.

Brian Johnson's hearing loss and departure

On 7 March 2016, the band announced that the final ten dates of the Rock or Bust World Tour would be rescheduled as Johnson's doctors had ordered him to stop touring immediately, as his hearing loss had accelerated and he risked complete deafness if he persisted on the road. The ten cancelled dates would be performed "likely with a guest vocalist" later in the year, leaving Johnson's future in touring with the group uncertain. Johnson himself later stated on The Howard Stern Show that his hearing loss didn't come from having performed for 36 years with AC/DC, but rather his love of auto racing and having forgotten to put ear plugs in during one race left him with a ruptured ear drum in his left ear.

However, on 15 March 2016, American comedian Jim Breuer (a friend of Johnson) revealed on his podcast that Johnson had received a second opinion  on his hearing and it was not as bad as initially thought. Nonetheless, Breuer mentioned that Johnson told him that he was essentially fired from AC/DC and that he hadn't heard from the band since the announcement of the tour being postponed, adding that Angus Young wants to continue the band for at least another ten years and do at least one more studio album and world tour. Breuer later clarified his comments on Facebook that did not end speculation on Johnson's future with the band.

On 19 April 2016, Johnson made an official statement regarding his health problems and inability to tour. In the statement, he acknowledged his ongoing hearing difficulties but stated his intentions to continue recording and potentially resume touring if his health improves sufficiently. He also specifically thanked Angus Young and Cliff Williams for their support during his AC/DC tenure.

Axl Rose joins

On 16 April 2016, AC/DC released a statement announcing the addition of Guns N' Roses frontman Axl Rose as the band's lead vocalist for the remainder of their 2016 tour dates. The statement reads: "AC/DC band members would like to thank Brian Johnson for his contributions and dedication to the band throughout the years. We wish him all the best with his hearing issues and future ventures. As much as we want this tour to end as it started, we understand, respect and support Brian's decision to stop touring and save his hearing. We are dedicated to fulfilling the remainder of our touring commitments to everyone that has supported us over the years, and are fortunate that Axl Rose has kindly offered his support to help us fulfill this commitment. AC/DC will resume their Rock or Bust World Tour with Axl Rose joining on vocals."

Departure of Cliff Williams

On 8 July 2016, Cliff Williams indicated he was retiring from the band in an interview with Gulfshore Life, saying "It's been what I’ve known for the past 40 years, but after this tour I’m backing off of touring and recording. Losing Malcolm, the thing with Phil and now with Brian, it’s a changed animal. I feel in my gut it’s the right thing." At the end of the Rock or Bust Tour he released a video statement confirming his retirement.

Following the band's final show with Williams on 21 September 2016 in Philadelphia, PA it was announced that Axl Rose would be joining the band full-time and that he and Angus would continue AC/DC with different musicians.

Legacy

AC/DC were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on 10 March 2003. During the ceremony the band performed "Highway to Hell" and, 

"You Shook Me All Night Long", with guest vocals provided by host Steven Tyler of Aerosmith. He described the band's power chords as "the thunder from down under that gives you the second most powerful surge that can flow through your body." During the acceptance speech, Brian Johnson  quoted their 1977 song "Let There Be Rock".

On 22 March 2000, the municipality of Leganés (near Madrid) named a street in honour of the band as "Calle de AC/DC" ("AC/DC Street"). Malcolm and Angus attended the inauguration with many fans. Later that day, the plaque with the name of the group was stolen, perhaps by an enthusiast or collector. The plaque was replaced two hours later, and stolen once again a mere three days after the fact. The plaque had since been stolen numerous times, forcing the municipality of Leganés to begin selling replicas of the official street plaque.

In May 2003, the Young brothers accepted a Ted Albert Award for Outstanding Service to Australian Music at the 2003 Music Winners Awards, during which Malcolm paid special tribute to Bon Scott, who was also a recipient of the award.

On 1 October 2004, a central Melbourne thoroughfare, Corporation Lane, was renamed ACDC Lane in honour of the band. The City of Melbourne forbade the use of the slash character in street names, so the four letters were combined. The lane is near Swanston Street where, on the back of a truck, the band recorded their video for the 1975 hit "It's a Long Way to the Top".

They sold over 1.3 million CDs in the US during 2007 despite not having released a new album since 2000 at that point. Additionally, the group's commercial success continues to flourish despite their choice to refrain from selling albums in digital online formats for many years. However, in November 2012, the entire catalogue (excluding the TNT album and the Australian versions of the High VoltageDirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap and Let There Be Rock albums) became available on the iTunes Store.

In 2009 the Recording Industry Association of America upgraded the group's US sales figures from 69 million to 71 million, making AC/DC the fifth-best-selling band in US history and the tenth-best-selling artist, selling more albums than Madonna and Mariah Carey. The RIAA also certified Back in Black as double Diamond (20 million) in US sales, and by 2007 the album had sold 22 million copies, which made it the fifth-best-selling album of all-time in the US. It is currently the second-best-selling album worldwide.

Go to English 1   Go to Dutch   Official website   AC/DC at DMOZ  AC/DC discography at MusicBrainz


Albums

High Voltage (1975) (Australia only)

T.N.T. (1975) (Australia only)

High Voltage (1976) 

(International version)

Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap (1976)

Let There Be Rock (1977)

Powerage (1978)

Highway to Hell (1979)

Back in Black (1980)





members

Angus Young – lead guitar, occasional backing vocals (1973–present)

Stevie Young – rhythm guitar, backing vocals (1988, 2014–present)

Chris Slade – drums 

(1989–1994, 2015–present)

Axl Rose – lead vocals 

(2016–present)

Former members

Cliff Williams – bass guitar, 

backing vocals (1977–2016)

Brian Johnson – lead and backing vocals (1980–2016)

Phil Rudd – drums 

(1975–1983, 1994–2015)

Malcolm Young – rhythm guitar, backing vocals (1973–2014)

Simon Wright – drums (1983–1989)

Bon Scott – lead vocals (1974–1980)

Mark Evans – bass guitar 

(1975–1977)

Dave Evans – lead vocals (1973–1974)