AC/DC are arguably the greatest hard rock band in history, with an estimated 200 mil-lion albums sold over the course of a four-decade career…and counting. Founded in late 1973, in Sydney, Australia, by brothers Malcolm (rhythm guitar) and Angus Young (lead), and later completed by singer Bon Scott, drummer Phil Rudd and bassist Mark Evans, AC/DC developed a simple but powerful heavy rock sound, steeped largely in the blues and ‘50s rock & roll, then fueled with incredible energy and power. With the help of Angus’ trademarked school boy uniform and Scott’s incredible charisma (Cliff Williams replaced Evans in 1977), AC/DC steadily gained worldwide recognition throughout the ‘70s, thanks to genre-defining albums like ‘High Voltage,’ ‘Let There Be Rock’ and ‘Highway to Hell’ — their first platinum seller. But it was only after Scott’s tragic death in 1980 and the recruitment of replacement Brian Johnson that the band achieved universal stardom with 1980’s ‘Back in Black,’ which now ranks among the top five best-selling albums of all time. AC/DC would never again match this album’s sheer songwriting brilliance or record-setting sales, but they continued to prosper throughout the ‘80s, both in the studio and as a major concert attraction, despite replacing Rudd with Simon Wright in 1983, and then Chris Slade for 1990’s widely acclaimed ‘The Ra-zor’s Edge’ LP. Rudd was reinstated for 1995’s Rick Rubin-produced ‘Ballbreaker’ al-bum (another multi-platinum seller) and AC/DC’s lineup and successful ways were to remain stable until 2014, when leader Malcolm was forced into retirement by ill health and Rudd was sidelined by various personal demons. And yet AC/DC still carry on, with Stevie Young (Angus and Malcolm’s nephew) now tapped to step in for Malcolm (as he did for a brief spell in ’88), and the group’s fifteenth studio album, ‘Rock or Bust,’ already scheduled for release.
- Selected Discography: ‘High Voltage’ (1976) ‘Let There Be Rock’ (1977), ‘Highway to Hell’ (1979), ‘Back in Black’ (1980), ‘The Razor’s Edge’ (1990)
- Related Artists: Bon Scott, Angus Young, Malcolm Young, Brian Johnson
- Further Reading: 10 Best AC/DC Songs, Angus Young + Brian Johnson Discuss Malcolm Young’s Absence From AC/DC