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AC DC - Black Ice (CD)

Black Ice
by Yiannis Dafopoulos at 29 October 2008, 1:51 PM

Most anticipated release for 2008? That's a really tough question if you ask me. Some people may say that it was TESTAMENT's comeback after 9 years of studio silence. Other may proudly shout that it was METALLICA's Death Magnetic that shook the world of Metal. But what happens when the old wolves of Rock & Roll take part in the game? What about AC/DC? The Australian psychos? I guess that many people will have to agree with me…

Do you remember when it was the last time you smiled while playing air guitar or while imagining you play the simplest rhythm on drums? I guess when you were listening to a sweet and dirty lick by Angus Young or when you were screaming the lyrics of Thunderstruck. Ladies and gentlemen, I bring you the gods of Rock & Roll! Dirty guitars, pounding drums, earth shaking bass and whiskey soaked vocals are the necessary ingredients for this hard rocking recipe. Some people will accuse the band for playing the same stuff again and again. FUCK OFF PEOPLE! That's what AC/DC stands for all these years! It's like nothing has changed these 8 years that passed. A brand new album, a new chance to see them live and one more chance to party like an animal.

Have you fucking listened to the Rock 'N Roll Train? This is a CLASSIC AC/DC tune! If you still want to hunt ghosts of the past by following clone bands that 'feel' like Rock & Roll, go do it! You'll only die trying! Has any other guitarist given you shivers down your spine like Angus Young does with his power chords? It is just amazing how these guys can still rock so hard! Gotta go, I still have hangover from Black Ice!

Yiannis D.: 8/10


It's been eight years since AC/DC released their previous album Stiff Upper Lip. I believe that all of us that are fans of this legendary band were asking ourselves when are we going to listen to their new stuff. Well, time has come and Black Ice is in our hands!

Rock music needed a kick in the butt, and - for Rock's say! - AC/DC's new album came out the right moment, by releasing fifteen new tracks for all of us, the old rockers, and the new ones to finally get to know how Rock is supposed to be played. If someone expects to listen to 10-min' solos, arpeggios, progressive tunes or blastbeats, he is reading the wrong review. This is fucking AC/DC! Pure, crystal clear, Rock and Roll with rhythms that will make you moving all night, well better say having a bottle of beer in your hand, move your head up and down and looking at beautiful women moving their body. This album will take you some years back in time and make you feel 18 again. Chords that will make you chill and Brian's voice is on the same level as the previous years. As for the production, Brendan O'Brien did just what he had to do. Left the band's sound to have the same feeling as the classics Highway To Hell and Back In Black had. Chaste as it has to be in order to have that old school sense.  You can listen to everything: every hit by Rudd's on the drum kit, the dual guitar from Young brothers, the great solos from Angus, even the time when Cliff plucks the strings of his bass.

Some tracks I tried to discriminate between the tracks - and it was a difficult task to do since I really liked the entire album - are Wheels, Rock 'n' Roll Train, She Likes Rock 'n' Roll (were the riff in the beginning reminded me of In My Time Of Dying from LED ZEPPELIN!) and Smash 'n' Grab.
To tell you the truth, if you are a fan of AC/DC and love pure Rock 'n' roll, you shouldn't even read this review. You have to go and buy this album the first day it will hit the stores! And hopefully we will be one of the lucky ones to them somewhere on stage. It's all about Rock 'n' Roll lads…

Harry: 8/10


Eight years since Stiff Upper Lip surely creates a unique lust and anticipation for hearing the new album of these immortal rockers. Is the wait worth? Did Black Ice reach our high expectations? The experience of any AC/DC album cannot be compared with anything else in the musical scene. Simply there is no other band that is able to look them in their eyes. Having in your mind this any record of AC/DC cannot be bad. So the following represents and extends inside the micro cosmos of the Australian lunatics.
Black Ice follows the Stiff Upper Lip's steps in a more bluesy sounds and more calm if you want which differs them from the bottomless reserves of adrenaline and sweat exploding like in Ballbreaker. The whole feel of calmness is without a doubt present here emergent a band that creates it in a complete quiet sea climate in the studio. This feel will absorb you making you somewhere in the middle feel a little lost or bored. The album starts with a killer song, Rock 'N Roll Train, including a really good refrain making you realize what band is this. Pure AC/DC hymn. The other two, that can be easily included in their set lists are the War Machine with an insurrecting of the senses riff and the warm touch of the self titled. It is not a random fact that the first two songs were the primary protruded ones. Except these, Skies On Fire and Big Jack will make you feel good, Anything Goes brings weird emotions inside, one of the different and good surprises inside. The almost Indian summer tempo with the slide guitar of Stormy May Day will win your interest although looks like is incomplete while the erotic and highly sharpness of She Likes Rock N' Roll's refrain adds some more points in Black Ice's value. The other tracks do not have anything special to give, at least for AC/DC's standards. I think 15 tracks are a lot, especially when you don't have something bombastic to catch your interest, a symptom of times when a band has to fulfill a cd length. The pleasure feeling seems to be divided in many parts and instead of having a steady and hard as a rock album becomes a little bit fluid.    
Keep in mind that tracks like Smash N' Grab, Decibel, Money Made or the ballad - ish Rock N Roll Dream could be very nice ones for any other band but surely AC/DC has offered much, much better things in the near past and anytime this five piece enters the studio door can write them with characteristic ease. The following rating is based upon their discography and only.

Yiannis DK.: 7/10


Would never feel a new album by this top-of-the-tops band would raise questions. Not about the music itself; rather 'bout the world tour the band will embark on and its 'ticket mania' impression. Eventually, I think at times that this new album, Black Ice, is a good reason needed for our beloved AC/DC to hit the road again after six or seven years. In older times bands did build up tours in order to promote a new album. In this case we may see an album required to be released as a prerequisite/motive (not needed, indeed…) for a tour.
Black Ice is an AC/DC album; hence, it surely kicks R'n'R ass the least. Weird enough, there are lots of songs in this release, kinda peculiar for AC/DCs likes. Mid-pace shakers are mostly included, with some more groovy takes here and there. Johnson miaows and we like it. Angus and Malcolm delivers the goods in a more rockin' way than in their post-80s works (even going 'vintage 70s' at times) and the Williams/Rudd duo…well, U know what to expect.
Scarce amendments would you expect to find in Black Ice, based on what you know regarding AC/DC. It'll take time to see which (if any) songs will sneak out to make 'classics'. Unfortunately, it seems the new album is destined to (also) get buried really quickly since everyone's in front of a PC trying to get hold of a 'golden' ticket just listening(?) to the album in the background. Log in, log in…

Grigoris: 7/10


0 Star Rating

Rock N' Roll Train
Skies On Fire
Big Jack
Anything Goes
War Machine
Smash N' Grab
Spoilin' For A Fight
Stormy May Day
She Likes Rock N' Roll
Money Made
Rock N' Roll Dream
Rocking All the Way
Black Ice
Brian Johnson - Vocals
Angus Young - Lead Guitars
Malcolm Young - Rhythm Guitars, Backing Vocals
Cliff Williams - Bass, Backing Vocals
Phill Rudd - Drums, Percussion
Record Label: Columbia Records


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