Life at 33 1/3
By Carl Meyer
Masters of tongue-in-cheek
AC/DC: Let There Be Rock (Albert/Atlantic)
If you check Youtube it’s easy to understand why the core fans of AC/DC
prefer the Bon Scott-line up. The guy radiates loads of charisma, sports a
torso that made the girls drool (he rarely found time to put a T-shirt on
it) and had a voice that makes Brian Johnson emerge as a sweaty, clumsily
dressed howler robbed of any kind sex of appeal.
I’ve never cared much for AC/DC. As a professional critic I did give them
some nice reviews when the records were new, but I never played them again.
To me AC/DC belonged to the second generation of heavy rock, and I preferred
the originals: Zeppelin, Purple, Sabbath. The second generation sounded so
limited, there was no variations to it, no surprises, no expeditions into
undiscovered territory. Even less so with later heroes like Iron Maiden,
Judas Priest and Def Leppard.
In retrospect I do hear that the older AC/DC-recordings have got something
going for them. The band is so unpretentious it’s a relief and there’s no
fooling around, to hell with the epics, they don’t hesitate, they go for the
kill: straightforward powerhouse guitar rock with a magnificent punch. Bon
Scott is made for these songs, he struts his stuff, as they say, the voice
is strong, raspy and smells of leather.
The band’s tongue in cheek-attitude is refreshing – Scott’s torso posing has
already been mentioned, but Angus Young is the master of tongue in cheek,
his all-over-the-place-headbanger-brat-in-school-uniform is one of rock’s
most memorable characters. To see those riffs and solos prance around on a
set of legs like sticks – even doing the duck walk - it’s so bizarre you
gotta love him.
“Let There Be Rock” is a solid album. It’s got power and a good punch, it’s
slightly seedy and not a single ballad is allowed, just some blues for a
breather. To put it this way: I would not be embarrassed to have this album
in my collection.
Released: March 1977 (Australia)
All songs written and composed by Angus Young, Malcolm Young and Bon Scott
1. “Go Down” 5:20
2. “Dog Eat Dog” 3:35
3. “Let There Be Rock” 6:07
4. “Bad Boy Boogie” 4:28
5. “Overdose” 6:09
6. “Crabsody in Blue” 4:45
7. “Hell Ain’t a Bad Place to Be” 4:15
8. “Whole Lotta Rosie” 5:22
Note: The international edition, released later in June 1977,
substituted “Problem Child” for “Crabsody in Blue” on side 2 of the LP.
“Problem Child”, was originally released on “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” in
1976. This was a shortened version of the original. For the original vinyl
release, in all markets other than the USA and Japan, “Crabsody in Blue” was
featured instead of “Problem Child”.
Bon Scott – lead vocals
Angus Young – lead guitar
Malcolm Young – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
Mark Evans – bass guitar
Phil Rudd – drums, percussion
Producers: Harry Vanda, George Young