Four-time New York Times bestselling author and former writer/editor of Rolling Stone magazine Anthony Bozza recently spoke to Inside Heavy about writing the booklet on AC/DC for the 30th anniversary re-release of the band’s classic concert film “Let There Be Rock”. You can now listen to the chat below.
Bozza‘s book “Why AC/DC Matters” was released in October 2009 via William Morrow (an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers). He decided to write the book because, from the start, AC/DC was at best ignored — and at worst ridiculed — by the mainstream music press. In AC/DC‘s nearly four-decade history, the band has graced the cover of Rolling Stone exactly twice — there was no Bon Scott memorial issue, no exclusive “in-the-studio” pieces, and no fitting recognition in any of the magazine’s endless “greatest” lists. The mainstream media’s critical subtext has always been that AC/DC is unworthy of serious consideration, an inexplicably popular band for the tasteless masses, selling the obvious to an unseen, uncultured majority.
“Let There Be Rock” arrived at last on DVD and Blu-ray on June 7, and a special collector’s edition of the set was made available in a limited run of just 90,000 copies. According to The Pulse Of Radio, this edition comes in a collectible steel case, includes keepsake premium items and contains over an hour of newly added bonus features, documentaries and interviews with artists like DEF LEPPARD‘s Rick Allen, Matt Sorum of GUNS N’ ROSES, Scott Ian from ANTHRAX, Billy Corgan of the SMASHING PUMPKINS, MOTÖRHEAD‘s Lemmy Kilmister and more.
The movie documents lead singer Bon Scott‘s final filmed live show with AC/DC, including 13 tracks such as “Whole Lotta Rosie”, “High Voltage”, “Highway To Hell” and the title song. The concert took place just two months before Scott‘s death in February 1980.
Shot at the Pavilion De Paris in December 1979, the movie was released in France a year after it was filmed but delayed in the U.S. until even later.
The tragic death of Bon Scott, AC/DC‘s flamboyant frontman, in early 1980 sent shockwaves throughout the rock music community. At the time no one could imagine a 1979 Paris concert would be the last filmed live concert of the hallowed singer’s career but he left the stage that night with the rest of the band leaving it all out there as he had done so many times before for millions of fans. Now for the first time ever on Blu-ray and DVD, Warner Home Video (WHV) is getting set to celebrate one of the greatest performers and legendary rock bands of all-time by releasing AC/DC “Let There Be Rock” to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the theatrical release. This legendary concert film showcases the power and precision the group brought to the stage that night during the Australian hard rock band’s “Highway To Hell” tour.
The track listing is as follows:
01. Live Wire
02. Shot Down in Flames
03. Hell Ain’t a Bad Place to Be
04. Sin City
05. Walk All over You
06. Bad Boy Boogie
07. The Jack
08. Highway to Hell
09. Girls Got Rhythm
10. High Voltage
11. Whole Lotta Rosie
13. Let There Be Rock
Special features include:
* Loud, Locked Loaded: The Rites of Rock: Seasoned rockers, actors and journalists recollect their rite of passage as early witnesses to the raw, bone rattling rock of AC/DC.
* AC/DC: The Bedrock of Riff: No one has mastered the basic DNA of riff rock as successfully as AC/DC. Explore Angus and Malcolm Young‘s telepathic groove and the four-on-the-floor swing of Mark Rudd.
* Angus Young: A True Guitar Monster: Angus Young‘s transformation from diminutive schoolboy to raging rock monster electrifies the masses. Find out what makes this time bomb tick.
* Bon Scott: The Pirate of Rock ‘n’ Roll: Bon Scott was the ringleader of the AC/DC circus, balancing his screaming sexuality with a rakish charm. Get a glimpse into the life of a classic rock ‘n’ roll pirate.
* AC/DC: A Rock Solid Legacy: From bar band to arena rock, AC/DC stuck to their guns and shot their way to the top. Fellow rockers and journalists chart AC/DC‘s ascent into the pantheon of rock Gods in rock ‘n’ roll history.
* BD Playlist: your favorite songs in your favorite order
* 32-page tribute book by rock journalist Anthony Bozza (author of “Why AC/DC Matters”
* Exclusive souvenir guitar pick
* Collector card set featuring concert photos
According to the All Music Guide, “Let There Be Rock” was released in France a year after it was filmed, though American release was delayed until well after the band had established themselves in the States with new vocalist Brian Johnson and the multi-platinum success of the “Back In Black” album.
In his review of the original “Let There Be Rock” film, Fred Beldin of the All Music Guide wrote, “Director Eric Dionysis captures the excitement of the live show with an energetic style and effective close-up shots, though the staged interviews and sub-‘The Song Remains The Same’ fantasy sequences show the band to be bemused but not convinced by these attempts to add some arty depth to the proceedings. The highlight of the extracurricular segments is Bon Scott, radiating warmth and humility in these last interviews before his untimely death at age 33 from alcohol poisoning.”
Promotional clips from “Let There Be Rock” concert film:
Original movie poster:
New Blu-ray packaging: