AXL/DC: A Whole Lotta Axl Rose
It was a badly kept secret that he was auditioning for them, but now Sky News has confirmed that Axl Rose will be singing for AC/DC on the remaining rescheduled dates of their US tour (the AC/DC website suggests these will be later in the year).
Is Axl up to the job? Axl Rose is no stranger to singing AC/DC tunes, Guns’N’Roses have covered Whole Lotta Rosie a multitude of times from 1986 as well as on their recent tours and Axl’s vocals are very… interesting. And if he is up to job, Angus and Co. certainly wont allow him to get away with any of his petulant behaviour that he is famous for on those remaining dates!
Then there is a potential scheduling clash with G’N’R; with the gigs surrounding their Coachella Festival appearance and strong rumours of 21 or so gigs lined up for Guns' in the summer, how is it all going to fit together? When money talks there will be ways of working this out but it would be interesting to hear Slash’s view on this.
Now to Brian Johnson… he was side-lined from the band because of his hearing problems with his tour suitcases unceremoniously sent back to his home in Florida after he withdrew from the current US tour. He was quoted by comedian friend Jim Bruer as having been kicked to the kerb, although that quote has now been withdrawn. But there may have been more than an ounce of truth to that quote. Original AC/DC drummer, Phil Rudd, has also been ostracised by the band, albeit the circumstances are very different the treatment remains the same.
So, with Axl now covering the remaining US dates, what about the European tour which the band have remained tight lipped about? Will Brian Johnson be welcomed back… if he even wants to come back or is he considered riff raff now? Or would Axl do these as well?
There is the possibility that it could end up a revolving door of celebrity rock vocalists, Pelle Almqvist of The Hives has put his hand up offering his services and then there is the Spanish opera singer, Cristina Ramos, who performed Highway To Hell on Spain’s Got Talent
However, this approach could result in the band becoming a parody of themselves and begs the question is the brand bigger than the band? If it is then the likelihood of a refund for tickets for the European gigs in the event of a Johnson no-show is out of the question (unless of course the dates are changed) and the band will descend into becoming a farce which in turn would make the title of the bands latest album, Rock Or Bust, somewhat prophetic!
Words: Anthony Firmin / Photos: AC/DC and YouTube