Vancouver’s GM Place came close to being blasted apart last night as legendary Aussie rockers AC/DC took the stage in front of a SOLD OUT fist pumping crowd which varied widely in age and appearance. With all tickets being snapped up in less than five minutes when released a couple of months ago, the level of anticipation was as high as the $800+ scalper’s asking price for tickets out on the Georgia Viaduct.
With the boys having recorded their latest hit release ‘Black Ice’ in Vancouver’s Warehouse Studios (owned by Bryan Adams), the one-night-only performance was seen as somewhat of a quazi-homecoming by many die hard fans in the audience. And boy were they not disappointed…
Thanks to my good mate TJ, who somehow managed to get his grubby paws on a handful of tickets, I was able to join his good self and two of our other mates Chris and Duke for what was a night of pure rock ‘n’ roll that I don’t think we’ll witness again in a very long time.
The night kicked off with a sweet animated sequence featuring Angus Young’s horny red devil character attempting to slow a runaway train. In a burst of light and sound, the screens split in half and a MASSIVE iron steam train rolled into place as the primary stage backdrop for the rest of the concert. Simultaneously, the unmistakably raspy voice of 61 year-old Brian Johnson fired up and belted out the first track, ‘Rock N Roll Train’ from the band’s new album – ‘Black Ice’.
The first song merely set the tone for the rest of the night as the crowd, littered with flashing red horns rose to their feet and cheered and roared along with a fantastic mix of old and new tracks which looked something like this:
- Rock n Roll Train
- Hell Ain’t a Bad Place To be
- Back In Black
- Big Jack
- Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
- Black Ice
- The Jack
- Hells Bells
- Shoot to Thrill
- War Machine
- Anything Goes
- You Shook Me All Night Long
- Whole Lotta Rosie
- Let There Be Rock
For a nice video trip down memory lane, check out this video compilation from one devoted fan.
There were a number of moments throughout the night that stood out for me, from the amazing (and my favourite for the night) rendition of ‘Thunderstruck’, to the huge and busty inflatable ‘Rosie’ which rose to the occasion during ‘Whole Lotta Rosie’, Angus Young’s HUGE guitar solo during ‘Let There Be Rock’ where the 53 year-old took command of the stage in an electric rock frenzy running around like some kind of ‘Gollum (Lord of the Rings)’ lookalike on crack, and finally the explosive six canon salute to end the night with ‘For Those About To Rock’. I’m getting excited all over again just writing about it!
When the decibels had died away and the crowds were spilling out into the chilly Winter night’s air, I was never at any moment left pining for more. Such an emotion is all too common at gigs these days, but AC/DC somehow managed to leave me, and I’m sure many of the other thousands of fans I was rubbing shoulders with for the night, with a satisfied grin that stretched from ear to ear.
Oh what a night!!
A huge thanks must go out to talented local photographer Doug of SynesthesiaPhotography.com, who was gracious enough to allow me to use some of his amazing shots from the night for this entry. You can check out his full gallery of shots from the night on his Flickr account here.