* * 1/2 AC/DC. "Blow Up Your Video." Atlantic. This is the Aussie/English quintet's 12th LP. The previous 11 have sold upward of 13 million copies in the United States alone, and loyal fans can expect more of the same beer-soaked, grease-spattered, teeth-spitting trash compaction that they've clutched to their T-shirts 'n' halter tops in the past.
Truthfully, it's better than that. For a one and a two, founding ax-wielding brethren Angus and Malcolm Young have again enlisted the production services of ex-Easybeats Harry Vanda and (big brother) George Young, who bring a certain half-crocked pop sensibility to this ballroom blitzkrieg. For trey, as the band's first full-length studio effort in nearly three years, these Down Under Thunder Cats 'n' Jammer Kidz were able to spend enough time away from hotel bar stools to actually dream up a few new (for them) licks.
"Heatseeker," the first single, is prototypal. Set up first one, then another, lashing slashing rhythm guitar riff and let Brian Johnson's leather-lunged vocals do the rest. No fills, no frills, just 45 minutes of pure unadulterated whambamthankyoumam. Highlights include "That's the Way I Wanna Rock and Roll," which sports a nifty '50s-ish git-tar/drums exchange somewhere between Led Zeppelin's "Black Dog" and "Rock and Roll"; "Meanstreak," a slinky hard soul number redolent of Free and Wilson Pickett; the bluesy "Some Sin for Nuthin'," which--wonder upon wonders--actually has clever lyrics; and "This Means War," a zip-gun laser boogie-woogie that's destined to be every air-guitarist's stairway to heaven.