While there's certainly a lot to be said about innovation, a band like Airbourne really makes you step back and appreciate the simplicity of the old ways. Cut from the same cloth as AC/DC and Krokus, the Australian band return with Black Dog Barking, their third album of unabashedly badass hard rock. Though the band might owe a serious debt to their forefathers, they repay it with plenty of swagger, grit, and sleaze, serving up an album of high-octane rock & roll that's built for pure enjoyment rather than chin-stroking scrutiny. The thing about simplicity, though, is that it's not always as easy as it looks. While lots of bands have tried and failed to capture the black magic worked by AC/DC so many years ago, Airbourne succeed here by sticking to the basics, tapping into that perfect ratio of bluesy riffing, ripping solos, and straight-ahead no frills drumming that makes for an amazing listening experience when applied at maximum volume. While you'd think that, after three albums of it, Airbourne's hard rock homage would get a bit old, but in an ever-changing world the familiar can not only be comforting, but refreshing. In a musical landscape where the past is constantly recycled and reshaped into something new, and album like Black Dog Barking is like a safe haven for hard rock purists, offering up a safe place for people to wear jean jackets and pump their fists without irony or judgment.
AllMusic Review by Gregory Heaney