Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The importance of AC/DC

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So how can a band whose songs are so simple be that important? Well, I think the simplicity of their music and their whole approach is indeed part of their importance and their appeal. I think AC/DC are one of the most influential and most copied hard rock acts of all time. A large part of that is because they are so basic. I am sure plenty of club bands and bands just starting out choose to cover someone like AC/DC or KISS because the songs are often easy to play. Some people might the basic approach as being negative, but I don't. I think rock music is meant to be enjoyed and AC/DC were one of those acts that showed you didn't have to virtuosos to play rock music. The humor in the lyrics and style is another plus as serious rock is great, but it's good to have the lighter side represented as well. Above all else I think that at their best these guys were fun. A lot of that came during the all too brief Bon Scott-era, but along with KISS they are the top band I think of as being a fun act. Hopefully that was short and to the point.

***AC/DC week moves on with a review of Back in black on Thursday.


Blogger aXe mAn said...

Well said Mark. AC/DC is the band that got me into this kind of music in the first place. So they will always be special for me.

I am looking forward to the "Back In Black" should be good!

8:05 PM  
Blogger :P fuzzbox said...

I think you hit the nail on the head. They are just basic kick ass rock and roll. And there is something very appealing in that.

8:15 PM  
Blogger Andre du Plessis said...

The band is a classic. Note of interest : I read in an interview with Brian Johnson that they throw away songs that are not "AC/DC" - which obviously leads to their distinct sound and people's feeling that they lack of innovation. At least they stick to their guns, which is more than I can say for a lot of people.

4:38 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

I completely agree that a band can be simple and still make great music. The Ramones are a the perfect example. They wrote really basic songs, yet had this love of early 60s pop that made the songs memorable.

AC/DC was never able to write anything that was all that memorable. Their humor, something I like to call stupidity, seems to have caught on with the mindless masses for some unexplainable reason and AC/DC has made a career out of bar band mediocrity and a moronic appreciation for sex and alcoholism. It was bad enough in the Bon Scott years when they could at least muster a little swagger that diverted attention away from their musical shortcomings and lyrical idiocy, but once Brian Johnson arrived, that swagger was gone, exposing just how bad a band they were. At that point, it is completely beyond me why the whole world didn't recognize them for the lightweights they are.

It's not the simplicity of the music that bothers me about AC/DC, it's just that they're incredibly boring on every level. When I see an AC/DC shirt, it might as well say, "I'm boring."

8:14 AM  
Blogger taotechuck said...

It's now a proven fact: if you're in the middle of a tricky business negotiation and you just need to play some AC/DC, you're better off with Brian Johnson than Bon Scott.

8:30 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

fuzz-Yes, I think they are the prime example of good simple rock.

andre-I had never heard that one before.

"AC/DC was never able to write anything that was all that memorable."
To you maybe, but it seems like quite a few fans, writers, record stations and well a whole lot others would disagree with you.

"Their humor, something I like to call stupidity, seems to have caught on with the mindless masses for some unexplainable reason"

It's called a sense of humor and many people seem to have them, but a few unfortunates don't have one. Or they have corncobs stuck up their bottoms instead. I would prefer the sense of humor to the corncob, but each to his own.

"It was bad enough in the Bon Scott years when they could at least muster a little swagger that diverted attention away from their musical shortcomings and lyrical idiocy, but once Brian Johnson arrived, that swagger was gone, exposing just how bad a band they were."

Yes, they were never on the high musical level of someone like KISS in the 70's. A little swagger seemed to go a long ways in Bon Scott's case because he is still remembered fondly by a lot of people. I'll address the Brian Johnson thing in my Back in black review on Thursday.

If you hate AC/DC so much then you are more than welcome to give me all of your AC/DC albums because you own more on vinyl than I do.

8:55 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

I know a lot of people disagree with me. I can't be responsible for the fact that they're wrong. And I do have a sense of humor, it's just not completely indiscriminate. I do think there's humor in AC/DC, but it's a mocking kind of humor. I'm laughing at them, not with them.

8:56 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

As a service to mankind, I will keep my AC/DC albums. Otherwise, they're in danger of being played and that would surely be a shame.

8:58 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Chuck-Maybe people reacted faster when Brian Johnson was singing because they wanted it to end.

Bob-Of course you have a sense of humor, you like punk rock.

8:59 AM  
Blogger DPTH International said...

Well stated Mark.

9:51 AM  
Blogger captain corky said...

I've seen Kiss in concert and they were a lot of fun. Too bad I never saw AC/DC.

10:36 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

Mark - Exactly. I like the humor to have a point and be at least somewhat creative or clever. I'm still not sure what AC/DC's intentional humor is.

10:44 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

DPTH-Thanks. Keep in mind that Bob and I are joking some. We have known each other for a long time and we are very much aware of each other's opinions on AC/DC.

Captain Corky-I am sure that AC/DC were great live in their prime.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Bob-I think it's humor largely geared towards teenage males. So if you didn't get into it when you were that age then you likely may not get it now.

10:59 AM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

Well put. Simple does not mean bad or unimportant.

-- david

11:18 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

So it's not really humor, just nostalgia.

12:17 PM  
Blogger RockDog said...

You nailed it, Mark!

Rock n roll is meant to be fun and bands like AC/DC made it super fun!

12:35 PM  
Blogger Hard Rock Hideout said...

You are killing me. You certainly have a great hate for AC/DC, when so many of us love the band.

For once, I feel you are in the minority on this one.

To each their own I guess.

Rob Rockitt
Hard Rock Hideout

1:34 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

bob-No, it's still funny to me.

rockdog-I think for the most part they have.

1:35 PM  
Blogger BeckEye said...

I do agree that simple music can still be great, but I never could stand AC/DC. I like a handful of their songs, most from the Bon Scott era, but overall I just can't take them. I don't know why exactly. I really can't stand Brian Johnson's voice. Bon's was raspy, but Brian just sounds like he's on the toilet.

9:39 PM  
Blogger BeckEye said...

Oh, and I just read Bob's comments and I think I love him now.

9:41 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Beckeye-That's an image of Brian Johnson that will haunt me for some time.

Bob is always grumpy about AC/DC and the Stones.

4:28 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

Ah, Beckeye, a kindred spirit! Isn't it nice to be right when so many are wrong?

10:47 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Bob-You always think you are right though (even when you are obviously wrong).

11:15 AM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

That may be right at times, but not in this case. You're just jealous of my gift of clarity!

12:31 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

You are welcome to you opinion (even when it's the wrong opinion).

12:56 PM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

C'mon Mark, have you ever known me to hold the wrong opinion? If you say yes, everyone knows that in your heart, you're lying.

7:12 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Bob-Aren't you the one who was making a top 20 vocalist list and tried to put Roy Orbison on there, but not Rob Halford?

7:39 PM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

As I recall, both Orbison and Halford made that list, although I do recall that Halford was skipped on an initial pass. That was an oversight, quickly corrected, not an incorrect opinion. It's not like I was trying to suggest Dave Meniketti was a better vocalist or something absurd like that.

7:45 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

bob-I have to agree with you on that one.

7:47 PM  
Blogger Charlie said...

guys shut up

BOB-AC/DC is the, always has been, and always will be the best band ever

8:05 PM  
Blogger Charlie said...

Bob AC/DC is the best band ever and will stay that way

8:08 PM  
Blogger Charlie said...


8:12 PM  
Blogger bob_vinyl said...

Charlie, I'm sure many agree with you on both counts, but popular opinion does not always result in the truth. One thing that is not up for debate, however, is your inability to use proper punctuation.

6:19 AM  

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