Independent student content

BG Falcon Media

Independent student content

BG Falcon Media

Independent student content

BG Falcon Media

Follow us on social
  • They Both Die at the End – General Review
    Summer break is the perfect opportunity to get back into reading. Adam Silvera’s (2017) novel, They Both Die at the End, can serve as a stepping stone into the realm of reading. The pace is fast, action-packed, and develops loveable characters. Also, Silvera switches point of view each chapter where narration mainly focuses on the protagonists, […]
  • My Favorite Book – Freshwater
    If there’s one book that I believe everyone should read once in their life, it’s my favorite book – Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi. From my course, Queer Literature under Dr. Bill Albertini, I discovered Emezi’s Freshwater (2018). Once more, my course, Creative Writing Thesis Workshop under Professor Amorak Huey, was instructed to present our favorite […]

After 40 years, AC/DC still electrifies audiences

On Friday, Nov. 21, AC/DC took their “Rock ‘N Roll Train” into Columbus’s Schottenstein Center, proving to everybody that their much-imitated sound is still as groove-heavy and guitar-laden as rock n’ roll was always meant to be.

Battles raged in box office lines, and the show was sold out in about 20 minutes. But the guilty conscience with which I suffered for forcing a friend of mine to wait in that unruly line while I slept cozily has no place in a rock arena, so I left it, along with the final remnants of sobriety, at the door of “The Schott.” The boys from Down Under did not disappoint.

After a dismissible opening band from Ireland called “The Answer,” who were as eager to get off the stage and let the headliners on as the audience, the “chug-a-chug-a-chug-a” of AC/DC’s lead single from “Black Ice,” “Rock ‘N Roll Train,” set the packed-tight Schottenstein crowd into a frenzy.

Improving my position in the arena was an effort completely in vain, but it would turn out to be unnecessary. The band’s ability to reach people in the furthest depths of an arena, where I could be found, and bring them to the front rows is uncanny.

Doing the same thing year after year across four decades has made AC/DC the very best at it in the world. Angus Young’s firey lead playing, Brian Johnson’s surprisingly potent voice, and the band’s strongest suit – the impossibly tight, groovy rhythm section comprised of guitarist Malcolm Young, original drummer Phil Rudd and bassist Cliff Williams – are all in as strong a form as they were when this particular line-up first convened with the addition of Johnson in 1980.

The veteran rockers still know what it takes to entertain a crowd, but the songs have taken a strange turn toward being gritty, hard-edged, tooth and nail rock ‘n roll to feel-OK-about-yourself-and-the-world anthems. Something about the band playing it so safe denies them a certain part of their essence.

Still, it might be a bit too unappealing for Angus, who is 53 now, and the gang, who are all up in years, to go about like Vikings, pillaging their cities and taking everybody’s youngest daughter to their hotel. This doesn’t stop him from performing a striptease during “The Jack,” however, and he still finds the time to pull down his pants for the audience, revealing another pair with the AC/DC logo emblazoned on them.

Of course, the songs are undeniable. The set list takes painful care to please any AC/DC fan, but then again nobody really expected them to experiment with a 33-minute free jazz piece. But the songs are all solid, drawing respectable material from every era of the band’s lengthy history.

During one particularly lengthy guitar solo, Angus performed familiar AC/DC shtick – climbing aboard an ascending, circular platform to meet fans in the top row at eye-level – but he manages to do so without betraying any cheesiness or tackiness. Rather than looking like a cheap trick, it actually looks like Angus just does it because he thinks it’s fun: the essence of the band and their music.

The other really notable stage feature was the giant blow-up version of Rosie, the title character from my favorite song of the night, “Whole Lotta Rosie.” As you might expect, there was a whole lotta her on stage, and AC/DC’s ode to the woman with heavy carriage seems oddly topical nowadays.

But seeing AC/DC is about much more than the show, which was thoroughly entertaining, hearing the performances, which have not aged a day since 1974, or listening to the songs, which all employ the same handful of three-chord shuffles but still manage to each hold their own identity. Seeing AC/DC is all about atmosphere.

Nowhere else in the world has age, gender, financial status, religion, or any other differences mattered. Everyone in the nearly 20,000-seat arena was united under the banner of AC/DC, in complete solidarity.

I chatted with people who were forty years my elder in lines and successfully made my way into a VIP lounge to steal away a Manhattan, and with the spirit of rock n’ roll surging through everybody, none of it mattered. It’s the kind of thing in which one must participate to fully appreciate.

AC/DC have not changed a bit, and I would never want them to. Spirit abounds and spirits abound when rock n’ roll is played to perfection, and when AC/DC stumbled upon a formula that worked some 35 years ago, they knew better than to tamper with it. Their show is a monument to the timeless quality of the music.

Leave a Comment
Donate to BG Falcon Media
$1325
$1500
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Bowling Green State University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to BG Falcon Media
$1325
$1500
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All BG Falcon Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *