The anticipation surrounding the impending release of the new AC/DC album, Rock or Bust, has been building for months. The fact that it's the legendary Aussie hard-rockers’ first release without original rhythm-guitarist and co-songwriter Malcolm Young has been making headlines, and this Tuesday (December 2) the physical product will hit stores.

With or without Malcolm, I’m betting the vinyl sounds pretty sweet.

Just got off the phone with Langley's own Mike Fraser, who engineered and mixed the new AC/DC album, Rock or Bust, which is currently streaming on iTunes and hits stores this Tuesday (December 2).

It was the first interview Fraser has given about the highly anticipated album, the only one ever recorded without original rhythm-guitarist Malcolm Young, brother of lead guitarist Angus Young.

One of my earliest arena-concert memories was of seeing Bad Company on the Run with the Pack Tour at Vancouver's Pacific Coliseum back in the spring of '76, I think it was. The opening act was a prog-leaning rock band from Kansas called Kansas, who I remember most because they had a violin player.

This was just a few months before the release of Leftoverture, which included the huge hit "Carry on Wayward Son", which I've never gotten tired of hearing. It was the most-played track on classic rock radio in 1997, so I'm not alone in my fondness for the killer guitar riff delivered by composer Kerry Livgren.

Thirty years ago this Sunday--on November 23, 1984--Nazareth played the Commodore Ballroom, touring behind its new album The Catch.

In advance of the show I interviewed frontman Dan McCafferty and--among other things--got the scoop on the story behind the group's curious single, "Vancouver Shakedown".

Here's a slightly condensed version of the piece that appeared in the Nov. 23-30 issue of the Straight.


So I was checking out my Twitter account on the commute home last night and I noticed that my number of followers had blasted up from 1435 to an impressive fourteen-hundred and thirty-six. My new follower was a guy named Niro Knox, who looked like a pretty rockin' dude.

So I took a gander at some of his tweets and found one labelled "Guitar Solo" that was a link to a year-old YouTube video he'd posted. It's just him riffing out on a goldtop Les Paul, but as he soon as he hit a note it reminded me of Gary Moore, so I immediately followed him back.

That is all.

I finally got around to checking out the nominees for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's class of 2015 and, lemme tell ya, that institution has developed its most severe case of HUA (Head Up Ass) Syndrome yet.

Okay, firstly, let's rattle off the nominees: Green Day, Nine Inch Nails, N.W.A., Joan Jett and the Blackhearts, Lou Reed, the Smiths, the Spinners, Sting, Chic, Kraftwerk, the Marvelettes, Bill Withers, War, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band.

Told ya it was embarassing!

From that lame-ass batch, the only ones worthy of nomination in my books are Jett, Reed, Butterfield, and Vaughan.

Fvck Chic.

There's no denying that the vast majority of rock 'n' roll animals heading to the sold-out Rogers Arena this Friday night will be huge fans of Mötley Crüe, which is performing on its heavily publicized "Final Tour".

But I doubt I'll be the only one going there to revel in the killer tunes and theatrical shock-rock shenanigans of "special guest" Alice Cooper.

AC/DC just released the title track of its upcoming album, Rock or Bust, which is due out December 2.

Sounds like AC/DC to me, with or without Malcolm Young.

It's no "Shoot to Thrill", but then again, what is?

Whaddya think?


Thirty years ago today–on November 16, 1984–the Jacksons Victory Tour hit B.C. Place Stadium for the first of three shows.

For some reason, I went.

Here’s my unspectacular review from the Nov. 23-30 issue of the Straight.


The biggest show in the history of pop music came to Vancouver last week, in the form of the Jacksons' Victory Tour.

It was a dazzling display of lights and lasers, mechanized staging and slick choreography, available to anyone who wanted to shell out $40–and in three nights 107,000 fans did just that.

Just heard some great news in a tweet from one of my fave authors, hardboiled Texas mystery/suspense ace Joe R. Lansdale. He's the guy who wrote the story that became one of my fave all-time horror flicks, Bubba Ho-Tep.

Turns out two of my fave characters of his--Hap Collins and Leonard Pine, from the Hap and Leonard books--are coming to the small screen next year.

Can I get a "Fvckin-AAA!"