AC/DC Praise Stevie Young for Maintaining Malcolm’s High Standard
AC/DC singer Brian Johnson hailed Stevie Young for carrying on the rhythm guitar tradition set by his uncle Malcolm Young on the band's new album, Power Up.
"You don’t want to step backwards, and I think Stevie’s contribution is the fact that he’s kept up that level," Johnson tells UCR. "And Stevie, his part in it is to keep that level exactly where Angus [Young] and Malcolm always wanted it - you know, the best it could be. I think that’s it, really."
But Angus Young and Johnson don't see this is an evolution, preferring instead to note that Stevie Young's work is a continuation of what AC/DC have always done.
"We probably always just strive together [to get] a good rock song," Angus Young says. "When you’re doing something and you’re creating something, it’s always good to go, 'Is that what I think is AC/DC, those elements?' ... I don’t think we evolve, we probably revolve as on a turntable!"
"It’s hard to talk about evolving when, really, you don’t want to get any better than what rock 'n' roll is," Johnson adds.
Stevie previously filled in for Malcolm, who died in 2017, on 1988's Blow Up Your Video tour and joined the group for 2014's Rock or Bust album and tour when his uncle retired. On Power Up, which comes out Friday, Stevie can be heard playing guitar parts written by Malcolm as he and Angus began crafting the material that became 2008's Black Ice.
"We had a massive pile of stuff that the two of us had worked on," Angus says. "Before we had done that album, we had quite a while together writing a lot of stuff together. ... At the time, you can only present so much. So, that’s Malcolm’s big contribution. He’s part of all of the songwriting on the album. ... I still go away humming a lot of ideas that the two of us worked on through the years."