Review: AC/DC is thundering on decades later on ‘POWER UP’

The iconic rock band returns with their first album in six years

AC/DC Twitter | Photo Courtesy
The band has kept the loud music rocking for 47 years.

If any hardcore AC/DC fan would have heard the band was going to make yet another album in 2020 a mere two years ago, few would have legitimately believed it. After the death of guitarist Malcolm Young in 2017 and drummer Phil Rudd being placed on house arrest for eight months, another record seemed unlikely at best.

Lead singer Brian Johnson had to exit their previous tour early due to exhibiting severe deafness. Yet somehow, after all the band has been through, they’ve overcome all obstacles to deliver a loud, unapologetic good time on POWER UP.

The band went on record multiple times to state that they wished to release this album much sooner than they did. The album had been reportedly recorded throughout 2018 and early 2019 and was scheduled for release in early 2020. When COVID-19 shut down the nation and prevented artists from touring, they decided to delay the album by nearly a year.

Interestingly, all 12 tracks are co-written by Malcolm and Angus Young, as Angus selected many of these songs and lyrics from a plethora of unused songs that built up over the decades. Despite the passing of his older brother years before, it’s clear that he still had a significant impact on this record, just as Back In Black was heavily impacted by former member Bon Scott.

On their new record, which also represents their 17th official studio album, they show no sign of slowing down. The record is loud, brash and for better or worse, exactly what one would expect from AC/DC.

Standout tracks from the album include lead singles “Shot In The Dark” and “Realize,” as well as the rising hits “Rejection” and “Demon Fire.” The songs don’t diverge from their classic hits, as they stick to their notorious ballad-heavy, hard-rock anthems.

Some feared that they would attempt to rebrand or change their sound after years away and a strong chance this is their last record. That was the last thing on their minds, as they delivered more of the same sound that caused their fans to become obsessed with them.

While many can celebrate the return of one of the most iconic and debatably best rock groups of all time, the listener can be relieved that they didn’t stray too far from what was expected of them. After nearly five decades of rocking out and hailing Satan, one thing is for sure: They’re still the same hard-rocking Aussies they were at the beginning of their career.

Review: 4/5

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