If You Want Blood You've Got It


Atlantic Records, 1978


REVIEW BY: Alfredo Narvaez


The purpose of live albums is to recreate the experience of being there at a concert. The downside of them is that some of the elements - the atmosphere, the light show, the crazy fans - can't be duplicated and put on the CD. Furthermore, many live albums leave much to be desired - an easy example is Led Zeppelin's The Song Remains The Same, which didn't do any justice to an incredible live band. At best, live albums are quick snapshots into the life of a band - not only their musical material, but their attitude and their abilities are forever imprinted on the recording.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

If that is true, then AC/DC's If You Want Blood, You've Got It is a snapshot into one of the loudest and rowdiest bands in rock and roll history. It tells you of a band hungry for success and in full command of their capabilities.

Few live albums can give you that feeling of being there. From the start - with "Riff Raff" - the band sounds raw and real. The album is loud and aggressive. Most bands would do their softer material in the middle, but AC/DC - having no "soft" material - pound away with stuff like "Whole Lotta Rosie," "Problem Child" and "Rock 'N' Roll Damnation."

The incomparable Bon Scott, who I think is still not getting his due, sounds terrific in here and in full command of the audience. He manages to make "The Jack" sound randier than before - a feat which is, well, amazing. Angus Young finds ways of twisting and turning his guitar into incredible solos. The rhythm section - guitarist Malcolm Young, bassist Cliff Williams and drummer Phil Rudd - constantly keep the rhythm going without letting up. Listen to "Let There Be Rock." These guys were on!

After the album closing "Rocker," the listener is left wanting much, much more. That's my one small complaint. I want more. There's no "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap," no "Live Wire" and no more material from Powerage - the album they were touring to support.

Listen to it. Few bands can match this much raw power. Not only that, but they are incredibly on point and don't let up. After listening to this album, your appreciation of live concerts may go up - as will your expectations. And that is a final benefit - you not only appreciate live shows more, but you'll expect bands to give you more. And that's only fair.

Rating: A

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


© 1998 Alfredo Narvaez and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Atlantic Records, and is used for informational purposes only.