Top 50 AC/DC Songs: 40 to 31
'The Razor's Edge' is a return to form after AC/DC’s “wilderness years” during the second half of the ‘80s. Sure, Bruce Fairbairn’s production is a little sleek, but it made sense at the time, and AC/DC made it count with their strongest set of new songs in years, including ‘Thunderstruck,‘ ‘Are You Ready’ and the hilariously naughty ‘Mistress for Christmas.’ This is one of the rare occasions when the promise that this is AC/DC’s best album since ‘Back in Black’ might actually be true.
This energetic but somewhat nondescript ‘50s rock 'n' roll tribute, was originally buried on the second side of the Australia-only ‘T.N.T.’ LP and then revived for the U.S. version of ‘Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap.’ But its true power is revealed onstage -- specifically, as the final encore played on 1978’s barnstorming AC/DC concert document, ‘If You Want Blood You’ve Got It,’ where the band's adrenaline-fueled and sweat-drenched, borderline apoplectic performance has been sending “punters” home with big silly grins on their faces for more than three decades now.
This was one of the few songs from AC/DC’s Australia-only debut album to be used on the following year’s international version of ‘High Voltage.’ The song doesn't provide Bon Scott’s deep thoughts on cross-dressing; instead, ‘She’s Got Balls’ was inspired by the singer's wife, who apparently had the “balls” to request that he write a song about her. She got this for her troubles. Then she divorced him.
Luckily for Bon Scott, he soon had lines of lovely ladies waiting for him at every venue's backstage door, and it's to them that 1977’s alternately charming and blunt ‘Go Down’ is dedicated. Listen in as Scott tells Ruby, Mary and any other lass within earshot that she’s the one for him, followed by helpful and surprisingly graphic instructions about just what they can do to win his, um, heart. What a devil! Lyrics aside, ‘Go Down’ is vintage lock-up-your-daughters AC/DC.
It's a well-known fact that every song on ‘Back in Black’ paid loving tribute to the recently deceased Bon Scott, but this one in particular may still seem a tad insensitive, given the singer’s alcohol-related death. But when you factor in that ‘Have a Drink on Me’ was one of the final songs Scott worked on with the Young siblings before his untimely passing, it had to make the cut. By the way, demos from the era -- which allegedly feature just Angus, Malcolm and Scott on drums -- remain the unreleased holy grail for AC/DC treasure hunters.
Having come up with a brilliant and very suitable title for their spectacular 1978 live album, ‘If You Want Blood You’ve Got It,’ AC/DC couldn’t pass up the opportunity to write a brand new song around it for their 1979 follow-up, ‘Highway to Hell.’ After opening with an unforgettable echoing riff courtesy of Angus and Malcolm Young, the song quickly steamrolls into a powerful groove locomotive driven by the underrated motor of Cliff Williams’ bass. By the time Bon Scott unleashes his final, blood-curdling scream, the song’s message has come across loud and clear.
Authority figures and critics alike have frequently dismissed ‘Big Balls’ as some kind of distasteful novelty song, but we think they've simply misunderstood the earnest and perfectly innocent meaning behind Bon Scott’s lyrics. After all, one can hardly censure Scott for boasting just a bit if his balls -- or parties, as Americans call them -- are, in fact, so popular as to be the “biggest balls of all.” Surely, anyone else would feel just as proud of his social affairs, and to suggest ulterior motives lie behind Scott’s assertions is simply unsophisticated.
Listen intently as Bon Scott shares some wild and sordid adventures reaped from his rock 'n' roll life on the longest song in AC/DC’s discography. The words to ‘Ain’t No Fun (Waiting ‘Round to Be a Millionaire)’ are Rock ’n’ Roll 101. We prefer the Australian edition of ‘Dirty Deeds’ because it adds an additional 30 seconds to the song, which was lopped off and edited on the U.S. version.
From cannons blasting to fingers roaming, 1981‘s ‘For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)’ album sure laid the phallic symbolism on thick! On this, the LP’s pile-driving second number, new vocal recruit Brian Johnson relays AC/DC’s personal views of sexual foreplay with brazen, blush-inducing clarity. No wonder this thunder-chorded wonder had to be skipped over for release as a single. The equally unsubtle ‘Let’s Get it Up’ was chosen instead.
- 31Anyone who thinks the ‘Powerage’ album is an emotional comedown from the sheer, hyperactive fury of its predecessor, ‘Let There Be Rock,’ is forgetting about the one-two combination delivered by the vicious ‘Kicked in the Teeth’ and its heavyweight colleague, ‘Riff Raff.’ So savage is the latter’s opening riffing, you almost wonder whether Angus Young experienced a seizure in the recording booth. Once he takes off into those wicked licks and concussive power chords, all you can do is hang on for dear life until the song is done having its way with you, and dumps you bruised and battered by the roadside.