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Back in Black

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  • OK, firstly, AC/DC’s catalogue is now going through Epic/Sony, after 20+ years of being in the Warner family. Now, hearing these new reissues, esp. “Back In Black”, is like having a wool blanket removed from the speakers. These are taken from the original 2-track masters, first time ever, and the difference really shows!! This doesn’t sound like an album recorded 23 years ago!! It sounds like it was recorded just yesterday!! As a result, you can file AC/DC’s “Back In Black” under the category TIMELESS PURE UNADULTERATED ROCK N ROLL!!Produced by UBERPRODUCER Robert John “Mutt” Lange, aka Mr Shania Twain, this album, and the 1 before + one after, are what gave him his reputation as a producer. As later with Def Leppard, Foreigner and especially Shania Twain, Mutt’s trademarks are the boosting of the middleranges and emphasis on lead vocals + backing GANG vocals. This really shows on BIB, and you can hear this influence on those later records. Basically, the guy deserves his wealth, as he knew what he was doing, and this album is just very well-done, period.The band is at the top of their game as well, which really was a miracle, considering the circumstances. The great Bon Scott dying tragically, and getting the whiskey-soaked Brian Johnson, formerly of Geordie, to take his place. This coulda been a disaster bar none, but Brian was a perfect fit, still with the band to this day, the album was a masterpiece, songwriting, performance-wise, and production-wise, and this all happened as their popularity just exploded!!Every song is a gem, a perfect example of pure, pull-no-punches, back-to-basics, bluesy rock + roll. It seems like every song here was a hit too, as each one had it’s share of airplay on rock radio, plus 2 singles made the US Top 40!! The songs never grow old either, don’t sound dated or show their age. Every song works on their own as a single, yet flow masterfully from beginning to end as a complete work. Basically, the album was flawless, is flawless, and will continue to BE flawless!! It’s one of those albums, where if someone asks you what rock + roll is, you can play him/her this album, and you can say “here’s your answer”. From the doomy opening “Hells Bells” to the catchy energetic “Shoot To Thrill” to the golddigger putdown “What Do You Do For Money Honey” to the raunchy “Givin The Dog A Bone” to the slow seductive “Let Me Put My Love Into You” to the classic 1-2 punch “Back In Black” + “You Shook Me All Night Long” (covered by Anastacia + Celine Dion??!!?? on VH1 Divas Las Vegas) to the cool “Have A Drink On Me” to the catchy “Shake A Leg” and ending with the statement of purpose “Rock + Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution”, with the line “It’s Just Rock + Roll, yeah”, it’s just a perfect album, period!!Buy it and treasure it. Guaranteed, in 50 years, it will sound shiny and new. Believe me, if you think pop music is all plastic … these days, all manufactured and just junk, pop this baby on, and your faith in rock + roll will be instantly renewed.May AC/DC keep on going and going and going….

    Posted on February 11, 2010