|Studio album by AC/DC|
|Released||1 December 1975 (Australia only)|
|Recorded||March-April, July 1975 at Albert Studios in Sydney, Australia|
|Genre||Hard rock, blues rock, rock and roll|
|Producer||Harry Vanda, George Young|
|Singles from T.N.T.|
T.N.T. is the second studio album by Australian hard rock band AC/DC, released on 1 December 1975. Seven of the album's nine songs were written by Angus Young, Malcolm Young and Bon Scott. "Can I Sit Next to You Girl" was written by Angus & Malcolm Young prior to Scott's involvement in the band, and "School Days" is a cover version of a Chuck Berry song.
T.N.T. was originally released on Albert Productions, and has never been reissued by another label. However, most of its contents were included on Atlantic Records' High Voltage album, which was released internationally in May 1976.
T.N.T. marked a change in direction from AC/DC's debut album, High Voltage, which was released on 17 February 1975. Whereas High Voltage featured some experimentation with the styles of its songs and had a variety of personnel filling multiple roles, T.N.T. saw the band fully embrace the formula for which they would become famous: hard-edged, rhythm and blues-based rock and roll. They also simplified their personnel system, and would use it from then on out, which was Angus Young strictly playing lead guitar, Malcolm Young strictly playing rhythm guitar, and the drummer and bassist being the only ones to play drums and bass guitar on the albums. T.N.T. contains some of the band's best-known songs, including the title track, "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)", "The Jack", "Rocker", and "High Voltage".
Three singles were released from the album – "High Voltage" (July 1975), "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" (December 1975) and "T.N.T." (March 1976). "High Voltage" was the first song written and recorded for the album, the title inspired by that of the previous album. Issued as the first single before the T.N.T. sessions began, many fans thought it was from High Voltage. Chris Gilbey of Albert Productions later claimed this caused a late surge in that album's sales. T.N.T. was released in a gatefold sleeve, with the inside depicting the various members on mock-ups of police identification cards, listing apparent aliases and partially obscured personal details including birthdates (only Bon Scott's is readily visible and Angus Young's birthyear is shown as 1959 (not 1955) in keeping with his schoolboy persona as this made him appear 16 instead of his real age of 20).
T.N.T. also led to more AC/DC appearances on Australia's Countdown music programme, following those in support of the Australian High Voltage album. These appearances included a live performance of the song "T.N.T.", as well as a music video for "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)". Filmed on 23 February 1976, the video featured the band's then-current lineup, along with members of the Rats of Tobruk Pipe Band, on the back of a flat-bed truck travelling on Swanston Street in Melbourne, Australia. On 1 October 2004, Melbourne's Corporation Lane was renamed ACDC Lane as a tribute to AC/DC, with the decision being based in part on this video.
T.N.T. is the only Australian AC/DC studio album for which there is no international counterpart. However, seven of its nine songs comprise the international version of High Voltage, released in May 1976. The other two, "Rocker" and "School Days", saw worldwide release as part of Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap's international version (1976/1981) and the Bonfire box set (1997) respectively.
- "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" – 5:15
- "Rock 'n' Roll Singer" – 5:04
- "The Jack" – 5:52
- "Live Wire" – 5:49
- "T.N.T." – 3:34
- "Rocker" – 2:49
- "Can I Sit Next to You Girl" (A. Young, M. Young) – 4:12
- "High Voltage" – 4:22
- "School Days" (Chuck Berry) – 5:23
Original release vs. remastered release
The original 1975 LP release featured longer versions of "Can I Sit Next to You Girl", "High Voltage" and "Rocker" compared to the versions heard on later CD releases:
- "Rocker" originally cuts out abruptly at 2:55 as the riff hits its peak, but on the 1986 CD release and the 1995 remastered CD release the song fades out at 2:51 before the cut.
- "High Voltage" originally finished with a sustained guitar note followed by a single hit of the snare drum. This version was included on the 1986 CD release, however the 1995 remastered CD release contains the version heard on the international High Voltage album release, which has the song fade out before the sustained note. This was how the original single release finished.
The versions of these songs included on the 2009 box set Backtracks are credited as being the original Australian versions. However, the songs actually fade out later than their international counter-parts.
When AC/DC's catalog (except the Australian releases) became available on iTunes in November 2012, the original un-cut versions of "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)", "Rocker" and "High Voltage" finally saw worldwide release on the digital version of Backtracks.
The version of "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)" was edited down from an extended jam by producer George Young. The inclusion of the bagpipes was his idea, to add an extra dynamic to the track. Bon Scott had played in a pipe band in his teens, so George suggested he play bagpipes on the song, not realising that Scott had been a drummer, not a piper. Regardless, Scott – who knew how to play the recorder – learned the instrument and went on to play them on stage with the band for several years.
The lyrics of "The Jack" (sometimes titled "(She's Got) The Jack") were developed by Scott who was inspired by a letter Malcolm Young received during a tour of Adelaide. The letter, from a woman in Melbourne, implied that Malcolm had given her a venereal disease, however he claims that when he got tested, he was clean. Scott's original lyrics were far more explicit than those heard on the album, which he deliberately toned down in case the song got played on radio.
"Can I Sit Next to You Girl" features a different arrangement and slightly different lyrics from the original version that was released in 1974 as the band's first single with Dave Evans on vocals. It also runs almost a minute longer than the first version.
Sales chart performance
|Chart (1975)||Peak Position|
|Australian Kent Music Report Albums Chart||
- Bon Scott – lead vocals, bagpipes on "It's a Long Way to the Top"
- Angus Young – lead guitar, backing vocals on "T.N.T."
- Malcolm Young – rhythm guitar, backing vocals
- Mark Evans – bass guitar
- Phil Rudd – drums, percussion
- Rivadavia, Eduardo. "T.N.T. - AC/DC". Allmusic. Retrieved 2012-06-20.
- Saulnier, Jason (30 September 2011). "Mark Evans Interview". Music Legends. Retrieved 6 May 2013.
- Engleheart, Murray and Arnaud Durieux (2006). AC/DC: Maximum Rock N Roll. ISBN 0-7322-8383-3.
- Video Footage and Liner Notes, Family Jewels 2-Disc DVD Set 2005
- Boulton, Martin, "Lane way to the top for AC/DC", The Age, September 10, 2004. Retrieved on 2007-02-15.
- http://www.acdc.com/us/music/tnt Lyrics] on AC/DC's official website
- Full lyrics at MetroLyrics: "It's a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)", "Rock 'n' Roll Singer", "The Jack", "Live Wire", "T.N.T.", "Rocker", "Can I Sit Next to You Girl", "High Voltage", "School Days"