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77 - High Decibels (Listenable Records)

By: David E. Gehlke

[AC/DC] "I'm sick to death of people saying we've made 11 albums that sound exactly the same. In fact, we've made 12 albums that sound exactly the same." - Angus Young, circa early 90's.

[Best quote ever]

We try to keep these at a minimum, but here's a rare little personal factoid: This scribe's old man (affectionately known as "Old Man Gehlke") used to rock to AC/DC like nobody's business back in the day. He owned their entire discography, which allowed yours truly and his ever-absorbing brain to be able to recite most of the Aussie's songs at a very young age. We saw the band in 1996 on the Ballbreaker tour, which to this day, is the loudest concert these ears have been subjected to. Heck, even my older brother was adorned with a For Those About To Rock...We Salute You onesie during his infant days in the early 80's. Do you think my family likes AC/DC? Is the sky blue?

Since 77's High Decibels is essentially an AC/DC tribute album disguised as a real album, it prompted the creation of a list of the band's ten best songs. Disagree if you will, but this list is iron-clad:

10. "Two's Up"
9. "The Razor's Edge"
8. "Sink the Pink"
7. "Guns for Hire"
6. "Problem Child"
5. "There's Gonna Be Some Rockin'"
4. "Whole Lot of Rosie"
3. "Sin City"
2. "Live Wire"
1. "Hell Ain't a Bad Place To Be"

77's worship of AC/DC is note-for-note and really scary. Yet High Decibels gets its rocks off when it wants to, especially on "Backdoor Man," "Gimme A Dollar," and "Meltin' In A Spoon." However, it's a far cry from the original, just like most bands who don't have an iota of originality. Nevertheless, High Decibels proves that time and time again, nothing beats the original...and that my parents are awesome for being such rockers.

"Oh, we've had our share of hotels bein' smashed and all, but that was a long time ago. You get lousy room service... I mean, there's no use throwin' a TV set out the window for the sake of throwin' a TV set out the window. But if you get a lousy picture then you have an excuse." - Young, well before high-definition televisions were available.

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