Friday, June 16, 2017

Throwback Thursday: For Those About to Rock, by AC/DC

In 1981 AC/DC had just finished up the tour for its biggest commercial success, Back in Black. Only a year prior the band had been on the brink of collapse due to the death of front man Bon Scott. However, they decided to press on and hire Brian Johnson to fill the vacant slot. Not only did the band manage to survive, but they absolutely THRIVED. Now it was time to bring on a follow-up album to keep the big success train rolling and clacking at high speed down the tracks. The result: For Those About to Rock.

For Those About to Rock has pretty much the sound you would expect a Johnson lead AC/DC album to have. It's loud, pounding, riffy, shredding, screaming, and filled to the brim with sexual innuendos and references. It's nothing more and nothing less. One of the major pluses of this album is it contains the greatly heralded classic which they use to end all their concerts: the title track For Those About to Rock (We Salute You). One of the downsides however is that this is the only track from the album that is still remembered by the general public today.

Night of the Long Knives is one of my personal favorites from For Those About to Rock. While not the most memorable track, I've always loved how big and catchy the chorus is despite the fact that all it is is the band singing "Night of the long knives..." over and over again. It was one of my favorites to play along to when I was first learning drums. There is some bit of depth to the lyrics though, if you listen closely enough. However, no one really listens to an AC/DC song for that. That said, it's still big, punching, and raw like a good AC/DC song should be.

For Those About to Rock (We Salute You) is one of AC/DC's most iconic songs, and for good reason. It builds up slowly, but when it finally breaks it's like a gigantic 21 gun salute to rock n' roll through your speakers. You can just picture the band playing this in some absurd sized arena packed to the rafters throughout the tune. They give you moments to breathe here and there, but not long. They're cut short by blasts of sound that will shake you to the bone in all the most thrilling ways. By the time the song ends you are more pumped up than you could have ever possibly fathomed.

Overall, For Those About to Rock is definitely far from AC/DC's greatest album. Aside from the title track there are a few decent ones sprinkled throughout, but it definitely feels like a bit of a let-down after the tremendous balls to the wall all killer, no filler album we got from its predecessor. That said, it isn't a bad album by any stretch of the imagination. It just wouldn't be one worth remembering if it didn't have one hell of a killer title track.

For Those About to Rock, by AC/DC receives 2 out of 5 stars.

Track List:

1. For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)
2. Put the Finger in You
3. Let's Get It Up
4. Inject the Venom
5. Snowballed
6. Evil Walks
7. C.O.D.
8. Breaking the Rules
9. Night of the Long Knives
10. Spellbound

Buy the album on Amazon:

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