Various Artists

The Rock-A-Billy Tribute to AC/DC

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While CMH Records have previously offered curious listeners bluegrass tribute albums featuring the songs of such iconic hard rockers as Led Zeppelin, Lynyrd Skynyrd, and Metallica, the band Hayseed Dixie beat them to the punch on reworking AC/DC for the fiddle-and-banjo crowd, so the label has taken a somewhat different approach to the songbook of the legendary Aussie hard rockers by releasing The Rock-a-Billy Tribute to AC/DC. The members of Full Blown Cherry, a rockabilly trio from southern New Jersey, tackle ten AC/DC tunes on this disc with the requisite amounts of reverb and twang, and while the musicians sound fine, they're also troublingly generic -- any number of regional rockabilly acts could have played this stuff at this aptitude level -- and their approach to the material isn't much to write home about, generally attaching a standard-issue slap-bass and snare swing to the riff-heavy tunes. And while anyone who has spent much time with AC/DC's records knows that the Young brothers have a genuine genius for writing dirt-simple rock & roll songs, that doesn't mean they instantly transfer to the "Go Cat Go" style; while "Shot Down in Flames" and "Rocker" fare pretty well, the remakes of "Highway to Hell," "You Shook Me All Night Long," and "For Those About to Rock (We Salute You)" lack the pure-beef crunch of the originals while the rockabilly accents sound forced and clumsy. Metal obsessives and rockabilly rebels are both advised to get their kicks elsewhere, as this set just doesn't deliver the goods on either level.

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