AC/DC's Malcolm Young passes away: From 'Highway to Hell' to 'Thunderstruck', a tribute playlist

FP Staff

Nov 18, 2017 20:20:23 IST

Legendary guitarist and founder member of the band AC/DC Malcolm Young passed away aged 64, on 18 November 2017.

Young, who started AC/DC with his brother Angus, had been suffering from dementia for a while. In 2014, his health issues became severe enough that he had to stop performing. He was replaced in the band by his nephew Stevie Young.

Even though it has been 44 years since this Australian rock band's sound was introduced to the world, their classic high-octane tunes are timeless even today. Malcolm Young's contribution as a rhythm guitarist had an impact on the soundscape of the late '70s-80s and his loss will surely felt. As we bid goodbye to another music legend, all we can say is... Let There Be Rock!

AC/DCs Malcolm Young passes away: From Highway to Hell to Thunderstruck, a tribute playlist

AC/DC was founded by Malcolm Young with his brother Angus

'Highway to Hell'

Living easy, living free/ Season ticket on a one-way ride/ Asking nothing, leave me be/ Taking everything in my stride

The opening lyrics to 'Highway to Hell' are just about as iconic as that riff, and the beats. Written by the Young brothers in addition to Bon Scott, the song was meant to be a reference to the gruelling life on the road the band had had as they performed and promoted their previous five studio albums all over the world. Highway to Hell (the album on which the eponymous track also appeared) marked Bon Scott's last with the band; the singer passed away the very next year of its release.

'Back in Black'

'Back in Black' was a song that featured in the seventh studio album (of the same name) by Australian rock band AC/DC. It's widely regarded as a rock 'n' roll classic, alongside AC/DC's other cult hit 'Highway to Hell'. The song is largely known for its hard-hitting opening guitar riff and it was said to be the band's ode to their former singer Ben Scott.


The opening track on AC/DC's 1990 album The Razors Edge, 'Thunderstruck' is arguably one of the most exhilarating rock anthems. Almost every teenager who picked up a guitar has tried to emulate the signature opening lick. And as the tempo builds dynamically and you “na nah” your way into its dramatic chorus, you can't help but tap your feet and headbang.

'Shoot To Thrill'

This second track from AC/DC's album Back In Black remains one of the band's most monumental works. Surprisingly enough, for a song that continues to be favourite among classic rock fans even years later, 'Shoot To Thrill' wasn't even released as a single back then. With its inclusion in the soundtrack of Marvel's Iron Man 2, starring Robert Downey Jr, the song became even more popular and reached a new generation of fans.

'Hell's Bells'

AC/DC's high-energy power riffs and delightfully campy lyrics influence artists even today and will forever define rock and roll. The song 'Hells Bells' is a yet another reminder of what made AC/DC so popular.

Updated Date: Nov 18, 2017 20:20:23 IST