AC/DC Confirm Return of Brian Johnson, Cliff Williams, Phil Rudd
After months of rumors, AC/DC finally confirmed that frontman Brian Johnson is returning to the band along with drummer Phil Rudd and bassist Cliff Williams.
The band shared a new image of them alongside guitarist/co-founder Angus Young and nephew Stevie Young, who took over for the late Malcolm Young on guitar in 2015.
The band has been teasing this reunion on Twitter all week with a series of short videos that show the red AC/DC lightning bolt logo flickering back to life. There’s no official word on what the band is announcing beyond the return of these three members, but they are using the hashtag #PWRUP and that may refer to a new single or album they are on the verge of rolling out. A couple of weeks back, photos emerged that showed the band on the set of a new video.
ARE YOU READY? #PWRUP pic.twitter.com/8gLuBElOci
— AC/DC (@acdc) September 30, 2020
Johnson left AC/DC near the end of the Rock or Bust Tour in 2016 due to hearing problems. He was replaced by Axl Rose for the remaining shows. Rudd left before the tour even began (although he played on the Rock or Bust album) after being arrested in his native New Zealand where he was charged with “attempting to procure a murder” and possession of methamphetamine. Some of the charges were eventually dropped and he was sentenced to eight months of home detention.
Williams never missed any AC/DC shows, but he quietly announced he was leaving the band at the conclusion of the Rock or Bust tour. “Losing Malcolm, the thing with Phil and now with Brian, it’s a changed animal,” he said in 2016. “I feel in my gut it’s the right thing.”
The band members have kept extremely low profiles over the past four years, although they were photographed outside of a Vancouver recording studio in 2019.