AC/DC’s engineer confirms new album includes Malcolm Young writing contributions
AC/DC's new album -- which has both vocalist Brian Johnson and drummer Phil Rudd back in the band and which is probably titled PWR/UP -- still hasn't been officially announced, but Classic Rock points out that the band's longtime recording engineer Mike Fraser has now shed more light on it in an interview with the AC/DCFans.Net podcast. Fraser said that he didn't actually learn Brian and Phil were back in the band until the first day at the studio. "When I got there, none of the band had arrived yet, but a lot of their techs were there… and one of the guys said, ‘Hey, you know what's going on?’ And I said, ‘I have no idea. I just know we're here and we're setting up,’" Fraser said. "And he goes, he says, ‘Well, the whole band’s here: Brian, Cliff, Phil and Stevie, and they’re here and we’re ready to rock another record.’ So, man, it was such a shocking, awesome surprise."
Fraser also revealed that the album does include writing contributions from Malcolm Young, who passed away in 2017:
Angus kinda came into this with a lot of ideas and riffs and not too many completed songs. But that was similar on [2014's] Rock Or Bust. Because him and Malcolm [Young] had written tons of songs before Mal got sick and eventually passed away. So he's got a whole treasure trove of ideas and riffs and all that. So he's probably spent a few years before we came in to do this record pooling ideas together and all that, and then when he came into the studio here, he just sat down with a whole suitcase full of little demo things he had done. And him and Brendan O'Brien, who produced the record, would sift through all the ideas and say, ‘Hey, that's great. That's a really good song. Let's put that riff here’.
He had — I don’t remember exactly — maybe three or four songs sort of completed that they maybe adjusted, added a chorus here or something like that. But yeah, it was just basically from a stockpile of all these riffs and stuff that Angus and Mal had put together over the years. So they had to sort piece the songs together before we'd record them. They'd probably spend a day or so doing that, and we'd come in, blast off the song. And like these guys work, it's pretty much live in the studio. What you hear is what they did, what you get. They fire up pretty quick. They all work really good together, 'cause they've worked together for so long; they're a unit.
Listen to the full 50-minute interview below.
AC/DC also recently released 30 seconds of the new song "Shot In The Dark," and then that song was also used in the new Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby-inspired Dodge commercial that aired over the weekend. You can watch that below too.
UPDATE: AC/DC revealed "Shot In The Dark" will officially come out Wednesday (10/7) at midnight Eastern time with a video. Here's the new teaser: