With the news that AC/DC frontman Brian Johnson is at risk of permanently losing his hearing if he continues touring, we’ve compiled a dream team list of potential replacements.
Howlin’ Pelle Almqvist
It’s only fair to kick the conspiracy theory off with the man who was first to throw his hat in the ring. Anyone who’s seen The Hives live would know that the energy Howlin’ Pelle Almqvist provides is unrivalled. He could incite a ruthless mosh pit if the Swedish band were on the bill at a retirement home, and after expressing how he’s been banging out AC/DC songs since he was six, we’d say he’s a frontrunner.
Now we know that Grohl has put to bed any rumours of him going solo, but how’s about we start a rumour of him fronting AC/DC? His solo act at The Grammy’s created a spark, and now with a potential opening for the lead role in a band he openly admires, perhaps it will grow into a flame?
It was only a couple of weeks ago that Taylor stated he’s starting to grow tired of touring. What better way to reinvigorate your role than switching things up. Whether he replaces his mask with devil horns could be decided later, but for now we know he’s a proven frontman with over 20 years experience. Not sure how’d this go down with AC/DC faithful, but any publicity is good publicity right? If you’re still not convinced, here’s the man himself covering ‘Dirty Deeds’.
The White Stripes, The Raconteurs
Keeping with the video evidence theme, here’s a young Jack White during his White Stripes days covering ‘Let There Be Rock’. The singer/songwriter/jack of all trades musician could add another element to the band, but seeing as ACDC are on their 10,000th tour, it’s probably the last thing they need.
Speaking of Jacks, Howsabout Jack White’s evil step brother, Jack Black. His raspy vocals could seamlessly slot into a whole bunch of AC/DC tracks, but we’re worried he’d be too hyped up from the atmosphere. Black at a pub gig would go off, so putting him in a stadium might see him combust from enthusiasm.
Billie Joe Armstrong
I myself was taken back by this suggestion, but take a look at the accompanied video and tuck into some humble pie. Armstrong has all the credentials, while his punk background could put some edginess to a sound that’s more classic rock.
We mentioned raspy vocals earlier when speaking of Jack Black, but Al Barr’s voice makes Black’s sound as smooth as Barry White’s. Again we’ve got a frontman who can hype a crowd like only a few people on the planet can, while his UK roots are similar to that of the AC/DC band. Here he is tackling and owning ‘TNT’.
Guns N’ Roses
A lot of the mentioned frontmen have the bellowing sound needed to match Brian Johnson’s low notes, but the AC/DC frontman can also get his voice very high. Enter Axl Rose. Proven in the high octave department. In this video, Guns N’ Roses cover ‘Riff Raff’, a track where Rose gets to show off his trademark range.
Alter Bridge and Slash’s band
If Axl Rose wasn’t up for the task, Myles Kennedy is arguably the younger version of the 54 year old. Full of energy and with a range that’s yet to catch up with him, Kennedy’s powerful vocals would fill out stadium gigs with ease. With age on his side and being experienced playing with guitar royalty, Angus Young surely wouldn’t mind this partnership.
Red Hot Chili Peppers
If Kiedis was looking to take a break from his jumbled lyrics and try his hand at some more standard song structures, this could be the job for him. When the Chili’s were funk personified, they took on ‘Back In Black’ in a way that only they could. The video has me sold that Kiedis could do the role justice and some. Not sure about Flea on backup vocals though…
The Kills & The Dead Weather
Why not? If there’s a female on the planet more suited to the role than let us know. Mosshart’s lead vocals and on stage energy at The Kills is what made their live sets one of the most sought after by festival directors. Needless to say her charisma was enough for Jack White to let her take the reigns at The Dead Weather.
Who would you trust with one of the most important roles in music?
Artists in this post
The Hives are a Swedish rock band that first garnered attention in the early 2000s as a prominent group of the garage rock revival. Their mainstream success came with the release of the album Veni Vidi Vicious, featuring their most well-known song “Hate to Say I Told You So”. The Hives are known for performing