Posted 28 January 2004 - 09:08 PM
Submission courtesy of Paulie Jay
Produced by Harry Vanda and George Young
Recorded at Alberts Studio, Sydney
Released 1975 on Albert Productions.
1. It’s A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘N’ Roll) (Young, Young, Scott)
2. The Rock ‘N’ Roll Singer (Young, Young, Scott)
3. The Jack (Young, Young, Scott)
4. Live Wire (Young, Young, Scott)
5. T.N.T. (Young, Young, Scott)
6. Rocker (Young, Young, Scott)
7. Can I Sit Next To You Girl (Young, Young)
8. High Voltage (Young, Young, Scott)
9. School Days (Berry)
Released in Australia 1975, TNT was AC/DC’s second album. Almost the great “lost” album as far as the rest of the world is concerned, much of this album was hammered together with the best bits of the High Voltage album for release in the USA. With a tougher and more confident production the group clearly nailed their colours to the mast. Three of the song titles feature the word “rock” – the others a scattering of excitement and energy (Live Wire, TNT, High Voltage). The album version has a gatefold cover with the inside listing typed lyrics (complete with X’d out errors) and police style profile cards. It is on these cards that we learn of Malcolm’s flatulence (“bum riffs”), Phil Rudd’s fighting ability, and the fact that the tallest person in the band stands at a less than imposing 5’6”.
This album almost holds the status of Holy Grail with Australian AC/DC fans. It is constantly voted their best release (although I reckon Powerage is their best…) and is no doubt a very strong album with no filler.
Proceedings get under way with what was to become the catch all anthem for Australian music. It’s A Long Way To The Top opens with the classic rhythm sound and feel of Malcolm Young with Angus Young adding melodic interest. Timeless lyrics and an excellent delivery from Scott propel this song ever onward. The masterstroke of having a bagpipe solo in a rock song cannot be underestimated. Nobody had done this before – but can you imagine the song without it? The idea for Bon Scott (who had been in a highland band) to play the bagpipes was Vanda and Young’s, the only snag being that Scott had been a drummer in the highland band and didn’t know one end of the bagpipes from the other! A great lesson for guitarists in this song is to listen to Malcolm Young’s rhythm playing. He just never lets up and doesn’t need to spoil his performance by adding in fills and riffs. He must be the most patient guitarist in history.
The Rock ‘N’ Roll Singer is next and is a lot of fun. The opening guitar solo is an absolute joy, strutting along full of sass and cheek! Scott’s honest delivery of what is essentially his life’s story reaches it’s glorious and self effacing zenith with the wonderful and hilarious “gonna be a rock ’n’ roll star – yes I are!”
The Jack has passed into the realms of legend with it’s wonderfully boorish double entendre pulled off in the finest “music hall” tradition. Bon Scott displays here that he wasn’t just a singer – he was an entertainer. His delivery of lines like “how was I to know that she’d been dealt with before – said she’d never had a full house…” is just priceless. The solo is excellent too. The metaphor wears a little thin in the second verse due to all of the good imagery being used in the first verse, but the rollicking chorus – and Scott’s delivery of “she’s got the jack, and who knows what else!” is irresistible. The booing during the ending is just hilarious!
Side one finishes of with Live Wire – a menacing “don’t mess with me” style song. The song never really explodes open, and the tension is held to the last. Another classic Scott-ism before the solo – “Oh stick this in your fuse-box”! Live Wire distinguishes itself as one of the very few AC/DC songs with a fade out rather than a crash ending.
The title track TNT starts off side two with it’s chant of “Oi, oi, oi, oi”. It’s more of the “toughest man in town” style of song, and with it’s catchy chorus is an instant classic. The line “dirty, mean and mighty unclean” was taken from a popular advertisement for fly spray at the time! A frantic ending sees the band crashing in it’s quest for ultimate power!
Keeping the mania going is Rocker, a snappy 12 bar blues jaunt that the band could never quite match for energy live.
Next up is Can I Sit Next To You Girl, a goofy Chuck Berry inspired song that pre-dates this album by years. Written, recorded and released as a single before Bon Scott was even in the band as a singer, the early version of this song also comes with a hard to find video clip showing the band wearing some pretty embarrassing clothes (pink velour anyone?) and a singer (Dave Evans) who was the exact opposite of Bon Scott. This rerecording of Can I Sit Next To You Girl was probably more therapeutic than essential, but does feature some spiffy guitar work.
High Voltage is a high energy rock anthem, written specifically with the chords A C D in it. (So as to spell AC/DC. This is true, heard it from Angus Young’s own mouth in an interview.) It’s an odd one because High Voltage is a song written after the release of that album (although it appears on the US released High Voltage album). AC/DC do the same thing with the release of the If You Want Blood album before the song itself appears on an album (Highway To Hell). Mark Evans' Gibson Grabber bass sounds particularly rubbery in this track – just how this bass got used by so many 1970’s rock bassists is an absolute mystery to me.
High Voltage leads into a great version of Chuck Berry’s School Days. A tribute to one of their greatest influences, this song is a summary of sorts for the entire album.
All in all, an exciting album chock full of great blues style riffs and solos – an essential purchase!
Posted 29 January 2004 - 09:24 PM
managed to give me the incentive to go to the shop and buy this thing. I'm very
fascinated by that band history. They make one of the greatest exemples of 'die
hard' bands. And ACD are such great chords after all.
Posted 15 August 2005 - 08:12 AM
yeah, something like that:
It’s A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock ‘N’ Roll)
The Rock ‘N’ Roll Singer
Can I Sit Next To You Girl
She's Got Balls
That's our track listing.
Rocker appears on our Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap album, and School Days is only featured in the Bonfire boxset (from what I know)
I still make music: https://soundcloud.com/tracylalonde
Reply to this topic
0 user(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users