The Friday Morning Listen: AC/DC – If You Want Blood You’ve Got It (1978)

What with the rumors flying earlier this week about the health of AC/DC’s Malcolm Young, I was pretty sure I’d be writing an obit/appreciation piece by now.

This is a little freaky because just prior to hearing the AC/DC news, I’d been making my way through one of those online questionnaire things that was supposed to determine my level of music snobbery. One of the questions asked if I’d ever been emotionally distraught after one of my favorite bands had broken up. Interesting. If we’re talking about me today, the answer would be “No,” though I can certain remember a time when I felt differently.

Actually, I don’t know that “emotionally distraught” gets right to it, but such events did hit me pretty hard. First of all, I was naive enough to not understand how a band could break up. I mean, they were in a freaking rock & roll band! It’s the best thing ever. How could you mess that up?! And then the music itself had a draw that can only occur with a very young person. You really haven’t seen enough yet. But what you have seen carries huge weight. At least that’s how it felt. Mick Jones was out of The Clash? The J. Geils Band was without Peter Wolf? How was that even possible?!! Ah, youth.

But this AC/DC thing? Heck, they haven’t really called it quits yet but somehow, it’s got me a little shook up. I suppose I’d better get used to this because there are still several bands who’ve been with me for a long time…and they ain’t gettin’ any younger. Heck, I’ve been listening to these Australian boys since I became enamoured of If You Want Blood, You’ve Got It. It’s been longer than that for what’s left of The Who. And then there’s the E Street Band. Yikes. It’s just that when “the end” comes for one of these groups, I can’t quite figure out if I’m mourning the loss of the music or freaking out at the time interval from my life that they represent.

Anyway, I’m sad for Malcolm and his family. The rumor mill is saying that he had a stroke. He always seemed like a nice guy. A nice guy who just wanted to make a big noise with that guitar. And that he certainly did. Hopefully he will again.

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Mark Saleski

Mark Saleski is a writer and music obsessive based out of the woods of central New Hampshire. A past contributor to Jazz.com, Blogcritics.org and Salon, he writes several weekly features including the Friday Morning Listen, (Cross the) Heartland, WTF! Wednesday, and Sparks Fly on E Street. Follow him on Twitter: @msaleski. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.