R.I.P. Malcolm Young

I like many other metal heads and rockers will be cranking out some AC/DC over the next few days in tribute to rhythm guitarist and founding member Malcom Young who passed away earlier today aged 64.

The Glaswegian was the driving force behind the band with his much more visible younger brother Angus. Due to ongoing health issues he stepped down from the ‘DC line up in 2014 to get treatment for dementia – the brain disease that took him three years later.

Reading through Twitter and Facebook his band and he were huge influences on many of today’s contemporary bands which has been highlighted by the slew of heartfelt tributes paid throughout the day.

As a youngling I never paid much attention to the band. They were another one of those bands that I knew the history and hits of without owning an album. I was into things of a more heavy nature at the time and it took a while to appreciate the more rock ‘n’ roll and blues tinged artists that were such huge influences on those bands I idolised at the time.

I was fortunate enough to see the band twice. Once surrounded by a plethora of flashing devil horns at Wembley Stadium in 2015 and my debut experience was in 2010 when they brought their own stage to the Download Festival. They played their set on the Friday evening and the carcass of their own set up overshadowed the main stage for the following 48 hours. It overshadowed the other bands over the weekend in an intimidating way and reminding the likes of Deftones, Lamb of God and Five Finger Death Punch that they were light years behind them as entertainers.

Their Download appearance was the only time I got to see Malcolm on stage as his nephew Stevie Young was filling in for him.

I attempted to get tickets to see them the year before on an earlier leg of the Black Ice tour but we were on holiday in Florida when tickets went on sale. By the time I got around to getting online with the patchy hotel internet and the five hour time difference all the venues had sold out in minutes.

Last year I had tickets for their show at the Olympic Park in London – less than twelve months after playing Wembley. When the departure of Brian Johnson was announced and the rumoured replacement of Axl Rose was confirmed I requested a refund on my tickets as to me that wasn’t what I’d originally signed up for. In hindsight and from what friends I knew who went said, he did the material justice. One of those missed opportunities I’ll have to live with.

If You Want Blood… is taken from 1979’s Highway to Hell, the final album to feature Bon Scott on vocals who was found dead in a car in February of the following year.

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Live Arena 2016.21

Only a day or so late with this weeks delve into the diary. I spent Sunday in a damp Munich watching Iron Maiden, Slayer and Anthrax then up ridiculously early for my flight home on Monday morning. So this week…

Tuesday – Leeds, Temple of Boom

I really want to see Power Trip, but I may or may not have transport in the evening as my car should be going into the garage. 
  

Thursday – Wolverhampton, The Giffard Arms

I’m not overly familiar with any of the bands playing, but I have a week off work and it finishes early enough to get the train home. 
  

Saturday

Originally I was going to see AC/DC in London, but as soon as I was offered a refund on my tickets in the wake of the controversial vocalist issue I took it. If only the photo below was still the same I’d be there.  
  

Heading to Leicester for the Uprising event is a possibility, but the main draw for me was Acid Reign, then I found out they’ve only got 30 minutes on stage! 
  

There’s a all day punk do in Manchester happening which could be worth looking into. 
  

One Last Run who I missed last week have a home town Warrington show which could be interesting.  

  

Or the most local gig is in Leek watching Senser who I saw live for the first time 22 years ago. 

  

Sunday 

A drive to Bristol to catch some of Sunday’s festivities at the Temple Festival was on the back burner. Carcass, Grave, Arkangel, Vision of Disorder would have made drive worth it, but yesterday (under a huge black cloud) the whole thing was cancelled. Some bands are trying to organise make up shows to cut their losses, so something late might drop into place.   
  

Live Arena 9

Well this weekends superb Nightwish extravaganza brought 2015’s gig diary to a close and now I’m looking forward to 2016.

So far plenty of bands to look forward to seeing over the forthcoming twelve months including a trip to Canada in April and a few continental European visits potentially. But first Christmas and New Year shenanigans to endure!

A few of next years shows I’ll be catching.

  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  

Heatseeker

Morning, I’m now on a break from work for the next four days – I should have been off for ten days in all, but work called… and I’m that generous!

 

First song thrown up on the iPod this morning was AC/DC’s highest charting UK single hitting number 12 in 1988.  This was the case for a quarter of a century until Highway to Hell reached fourth spot in December 2013.  The success of Highway to Hell was another internet campaign to keep Simon Cowell’s X Factor offering for the year off the coveted Christmas number 1 slot.  Over here that has been a pretty regular “call to arms” but I’m almost certain the only time that it has been totally successful is when Rage Against The Machine topped the carts in 2009 with Killing in the Name.  As a rock fan though you can’t complain with the Aussie veterans reaching number 4 though.

 

Heatseeker is the first single and lead off track from the bands 10th or 11th album Blow Up Your Video.  I say tenth or eleventh as it depends of if you count just international releases – making it 10 – or it’s number 11 going on domestic Australian releases (1975’s T.N.T. has never received a reissue on any other label than Albert Records).