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Power Up Image
Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critic Reviews What's this?

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8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 44 Ratings

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  • Artist(s): AC, DC
  • Summary: The 17th full-length studio release for the Australian hard rock band was produced by Brendan O'Brien.
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 19
  2. Negative: 0 out of 19
  1. 91
    Simply put, AC/DC went in and kicked out the proverbial jams, crafting their best album in years and igniting a spark of joy into the stark timeline that is 2020.
  2. Nov 13, 2020
    80
    They don't dwell upon the past, they barrel forward with a set of turbocharged blues and high-octane rock that doesn't merely sound good, it feels nourishing.
  3. 80
    While far from a reinvention of the wheel, ‘Power Up’ is a joyous celebration of the unbridled heavy rock that has served them well for almost 50 years and, we can hope, a unifying cry for the future.
  4. Nov 16, 2020
    80
    AC/DC do their thing, and it works.
  5. Nov 13, 2020
    79
    Through the unholy mess of its last decade, AC/DC has come out on the other end smelling like a black rose, and with a damned fine album in “Power Up,” which keeps the band’s inimitable form of metal magic intact with a few new wrinkles added to a familiar but still-thrilling bag of tricks.
  6. Nov 12, 2020
    70
    It’s not a perfect album, though. The vocals effects on ‘Kick You When You’re Down’ are more than a little grating, while ‘No Man’s Land’ feels stodgy, at times even like a chore. That being said, there is quite simply no other group on the planet who can match AC/DC at their best.
  7. Nov 12, 2020
    60
    AC/DC’s legendary stylistic consistency is on display across these 12 tracks. ... But with a group as locked on a signature sound as this one, the quality of the individual songs is paramount, and too many of those on “Power Up” — from the hookless “System Down” to the blandly bluesy “No Man’s Land” — are forgettable even after half a dozen spins.

See all 19 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 17
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 17
  3. Negative: 1 out of 17
  1. Nov 14, 2020
    10
    The best album from AC/DC since 1983's 'Flick Of the Switch', easily. A modern, new classic for the band that deserves repeat listens and highThe best album from AC/DC since 1983's 'Flick Of the Switch', easily. A modern, new classic for the band that deserves repeat listens and high volume. Brilliantly done hard rock record.

    I was skeptical when fans and critics were pretty unanimously hailing this album as the band's best in 30+ years - but I get it now. They're right. Somehow, they are right.

    As a fan of classic rock and AC/DC, I've maintained that AC/DC's output has been inconsistent at best since about 1983. In fact, since 'Flick Of the Switch', there's really not one 'album' that I can say is 'great'. 'Rock Or Bust' was damn good and 'Black Ice' was decent. I didn't think they could do better than those two, which were enjoyable, actually.

    I was happy with those albums - but after hearing this new one, it's clear I was somewhat settling.

    PWR/UP somehow manages to not only be the best album they've done since '81, but is among the top Brian Johnson AC/DC albums. How a band their age managed to do such a thing, I'll never know.

    Perhaps this band thrives after the tragedy of losing a key member like Bon or Malcolm.

    This album is fresh, contemporary. The band sounds revitalized, angry, energized and most importantly - writing quality tunes.

    It shows what was missing from AC/DC albums from the last 30+ years.

    There's a sharpness and fire to the playing of Angus, a harshness to Stevie's tone. A groove to Phil that we haven't heard in eons. This IS Cliff Williams' best AC/DC album, as his bass owns every song. Brian Johnson is singing like he's trying to prove himself worthy.

    Production-wise, the album combines the rawness of 'Black Ice' with the meaty-tones of 'Rock Or Bust' for a perfect hybrid of the ideal AC/DC sound.

    Material-wise, sure, a lot of this is somewhat 'same old' in terms of AC/DC - but it's a high caliber of it, which is what has been missing since 'Flick Of the Switch'.

    But, there is also a lot of new curves thrown on this album. The band tries some new sounds out with an occasional unusual backing vocal or song structure. "Realize" is a bizarre structure for an AC/DC tune. The vocals on "Kick You When You're Down" are out of place for an AC/DC album but they work, somehow. Even looking at the song titles, there's something different about this record.

    The band took chances on this record - and it paid off.

    Songs like "Demon Fire" and "Realize" show a band with fire and anger again. Finally, songs with a fast pace again on an AC/DC record. "Through the Mists Of Time" shows a softer reflection rarely seen by this band. "Code Red" shows battle-ready rockin' sensibilities. There miraculously is not one dud on this stellar record. I could go on - but you need to hear it for yourself.

    This record didn't hit me initially, but I've lived with it for a couple weeks (courtesy of a leak) and it stands leaps and bounds above anything from '85-'14 and sits on the top of the heap of best post-Bon AC/DC albums with 'Back In Black' and 'For Those About To Rock'.

    Killer record.

    Deserves all the praise it's getting. I hope this is the final album - as it would be a fine epitaph to a legendary band's career.

    9/10 for the material. Another 1 for the fire and energy the band put into it.

    10/10. Buy it. Listen to it. Rock it. Live it.
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  2. Nov 19, 2020
    10
    Fantastic album. The A side (until Demon Fire) is very solid and has some gems, already classic tunes. The second half of the album is goodFantastic album. The A side (until Demon Fire) is very solid and has some gems, already classic tunes. The second half of the album is good too, maybe a 7 rating, with good surprises: Wild Reputation and Code Red. For me, the top 5 tunes are: Demon Fire (instant classic), Kick You When You're Down, Through the Mists of Time, Rejection and Witch's Spell. Long live to AC/DC! We are waiting for you in Brazil! Expand
  3. Nov 13, 2020
    10
    2020 is SAVED by AC/DC! What an album. Classic AC/DC in all their rockin' and rollin' glory. 11/10
  4. Nov 24, 2020
    9
    In a year in which everything looks wrong, to listen for the first time to this AC/DC new record is like water in the desert. How does itIn a year in which everything looks wrong, to listen for the first time to this AC/DC new record is like water in the desert. How does it sounds? Just exactly like AC/DC. That's what I expected and trust me, they didn't fail. This is the kind of record you keep in your car for weeks listening to it again and again. As soon as Realize, the first song of the record starts to play, you get in "Rock" mode and start shaking your head up and down like in a live concert.

    Highly recommendable "Realize", "Shot In The Dark", get will with "Demon Fire" and the retrospective moment comes with "Through The Mists Of Time".

    Long Live Rock'n Roll!!!
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  5. Nov 13, 2020
    9
    The music we need in this F.....g Corona time.
    It gives blood to your bones, air to your lungs and power to your heart. Thank you AC/DC for
    The music we need in this F.....g Corona time.
    It gives blood to your bones, air to your lungs and power to your heart. Thank you AC/DC for this wonderful vitamin.
    Expand
  6. Nov 19, 2020
    9
    Wow! So great! Like the Olden days!!! A creative hearten back to the day of rawk!!! THE BAND IS HITTING 90 yrs old but know how to write aWow! So great! Like the Olden days!!! A creative hearten back to the day of rawk!!! THE BAND IS HITTING 90 yrs old but know how to write a great song or two or three! Expand
  7. Nov 13, 2020
    0
    There is absolute nothing original or interesting about this album, from the opening bars of 'Realize' which is just the same tired power rockThere is absolute nothing original or interesting about this album, from the opening bars of 'Realize' which is just the same tired power rock they've done for years to the final track 'Code Red', if you already own a ACDC album then it's pointless buying this one as it's just the same songs with different words but somehow a lot lot worse, in fact just buy their 'Back In Black' LP it's like this but much much better. Expand

See all 17 User Reviews