Fly On The Wall review by AC/DC

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  • Released: Aug 5, 1985
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 7
  • Overall Impression: 8
  • Reviewer's score: 7.7 Good
  • Users' score: 8 (129 votes)
AC/DC: Fly On The Wall

Sound — 8
After the chart smashing "Back in Black," and the nearly as good follow up "For Those About to Rock We Salute You" AC/DC went with a noble decision to try to recreate the sound their earlier style had. The two albums that followed were "Flick of the Switch" and "Fly on the Wall." As recently stated this album tries to recapture their original style but sadly it doesn't hit the mark correctly. The main problem is the vocals. Brian Johnson is a great singer in my opinion but the rest of the sound drowns him out in most of the songs. While the lyrics aren't exactly the reason we're all here for AC/DC at least the rest of the band does well. The Young brothers are still good on the album giving their two guitar charm as always. Cliff Williams delivers his simple, but profound bass licks. Simon Wright is the new drummer for the band and he does a well enough job, but Phil Rudd is still better. They went for a raw sound and they accomplished that although it's not as clear as say "Back in Black" it's still the same old stuff.

Lyrics — 7
With AC/DC the lyrics are always the same sex, beer, sex, drugs, sex, being a rockstar, sex, did I mention sex? The lyrics are no different here, classic AC/DC. However as previously mentioned the vocals are drowned out and hard to hear you may have to pull up a lyric sight to read along which is annoying. The worst of this "Lyric Drowning" is on the title track of the album where I swore the actual lyrics was just the screaming/mumbling Brian normally does before the real song begins. Not that the lyrics matter much anyway, but it's just a problem.

Overall Impression — 8
This album is one of AC/DC's low points... But the album is not horrible in the slightest. Saying it's AC/DC worst is like saying it's the worst of the best and even if the album still has enjoyable songs. It's AC/DC you'll get your moneys worth! Most of the songs are meh-average. However there are two songs on the album which are so good they'll be instant AC/DC favorites "Shake Your Foundation" and "Sink The Pink." They make this album worthwhile. The thing I hate about it? The album cover has a peep hole over the "Y" in "Fly" so it looks like "Flo on the wall" Why didn't they put it over the "o" in "on"?

1 comment sorted by best / new / date

    This album has a terrible reverb on drums and echo on the vocals BUT it's very good. When it was released it was criticized by rock critics because they considered AC/DC was surpassed by new metal and thrash bands of this era (Metallica, Accept,Iron maiden,Slayer)whereas AC/DC has never been a metal and not even a hard rock band. Fly on the wall is a boogie rock album,by the way the sound of the guitars and some fiffs sound a la ZZ top. At that time it was considered as soft cheese whereas this album is full of dynamics. The album is pretty slow but that's the point, they inject more power and dynamics on these songs than a lot of bands ( I don't speak of the bands I named above)who played all their songs at 200 bpm. Bad production but great album. 9/10