Hells Bells (song)

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"Hells Bells"
Single by AC/DC
from the album Back in Black
B-side "What Do You Do for Money Honey"
Released November 1980
Format 7 inch
Recorded Spring, 1980 at Compass Point Studios in The Bahamas
Genre Hard rock
Length 5:12
Label Atlantic Records
Producer(s) Mutt Lange
AC/DC singles chronology
"You Shook Me All Night Long"
"Hells Bells"
"Back in Black"
Audio sample
file info · help

"Hells Bells" is the first track of Australian hard rock band AC/DC's first album without Bon Scott, Back in Black. It is the first song on Brian Johnson's debut album for the band.

The song begins with the slow tolling of a bell followed by an intro played by Angus Young, with Malcolm Young then joining to create the classic Back in Black double-guitar sound, followed by Phil Rudd on drums and Cliff Williams on bass, creating a wall of sound.

The bell used by the band was a 2000-pound cast bronze bell made by John Taylor Bellfounders in Loughborough.[citation needed] The bell used in the song is pitched to the note 'A.'[citation needed] The song also appears on Who Made Who, AC/DC's 1986 soundtrack to the Stephen King movie Maximum Overdrive, and on both versions of 1992's AC/DC Live.

In 2010, the band Gregorian covered "Hells Bells" and it is included in their album Dark Side of the Chant.


Chart positions[edit]

Chart (1981) Peak
Germany (Media Control Charts)[1] 25
U.S. Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks[2] 50

In popular culture[edit]

The song was used as the entrance music for former Major League Baseball (MLB) player Trevor Hoffman at home games from 1998–2010, thrilling the crowd as he emerged.[3][4] The San Diego Padres' usage of "Hells Bells" for Hoffman was a forerunner in the heavy metal theme songs for closers used throughout MLB stadiums.[5][6] San Jose Mercury News and ESPN.com wrote that the song should be honored by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.[7][8] At Hoffman's number retirement ceremony, Brian Johnson paid tribute in a video to Hoffman for "rocking the mound".[9][10]


  1. ^ musicline.de / PhonoNet GmbH. "Die ganze Musik im Internet: Charts, News, Neuerscheinungen, Tickets, Genres, Genresuche, Genrelexikon, Künstler-Suche, Musik-Suche, Track-Suche, Ticket-Suche". 
  2. ^ "AC/DC Billboard Singles". AllMusic. Archived from the original on March 4, 2011. Retrieved March 4, 2011. 
  3. ^ Center, Bill. Story of Hells Bells Anthem, etc. U-T San Diego, September 26, 2006.
  4. ^ Capozzi, Joe (January 11, 2001). "Hell’s Bells — Trevor Hoffman, who started his career with Florida Marlins, bound for Hall after retirement". The Palm Beach Post. Archived from the original on January 26, 2011. Retrieved January 28, 2011. "I’ll never forget games I’ve covered at Petco Park when Hoffman trotted in from the bullpen to pitch the ninth inning to the ear-shattering sounds of AC/DC’s Hell’s Bells — perhaps some of the loudest, most electrifying crowd noise I’ve ever heard." 
  5. ^ Tarantino, Anthony (April 19, 2004). "For whom the bell tolls: Who'd have thought 'Trevor Time' would start a majorswide trend?". U-T San Diego. Archived from the original on January 28, 2011. Retrieved January 28, 2011. "Since using the idea, the Padres have become a forerunner in the closer-theme explosion." 
  6. ^ Engber, Daniel (April 14, 2006). "Hear My Song, Fear My Fastball". Slate. Archived from the original on January 26, 2011. Retrieved January 28, 2011. "The closer songs of the early '90s tended to mix a cranky bravado with the threat of mental instability—don't mess with me, I'm so mean and crazy." 
  7. ^ Peterson, Gary (March 20, 2011). "Baseball Hall of Fame should honor AC/DC". San Jose Mercury News. p. C-2. Archived from the original on March 20, 2011. 
  8. ^ Daly, Kaitee (July 28, 2010). "John Fogerty's 'Centerfield' sparks a list". ESPN. Archived from the original on March 20, 2011. 
  9. ^ Hayes, Dan (August 21, 2011). "PADRES NOTES: Hoffman ceremony filled with surprises". North County Times. Archived from the original on August 22, 2011. 
  10. ^ Sullivan, Tim (August 21, 2011). "Grand gesture is prime Trevor Time for good reason". U-T San Diego. Archived from the original on August 22, 2011.