AC/DC Reveal Lineup Shift for First Concert in Seven Years, Hint at New Tour

AC/DC has confirmed the lineup for its upcoming gig at Power Trip festival, the band’s first performance in seven years. The band will perform at the three-day Power Trip festival on Saturday (October 8) at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California, where Coachella and Stagecoach also take place.

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For the festival—which also features headliners, Guns N’ Roses, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Judas Priest, and Tool—AC/DC bassist Cliff Williams will come out of retirement. Meanwhile, drummer Phil Rudd will be replaced by Matt Laug, along with Brian Johnson on vocals, and Angus and Stevie Young on guitar.

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“[Power Up] for Power Trip,” wrote the band in a social media post along with a clip of their recent rehearsal of “If You Want Blood (You’ve Got It)” with the new lineup. “Listen to the rehearsal of the boys powering up with Cliff Williams, who’s coming out of retirement for the festival and Matt Laug on drums.”

Laug has performed with Alice Cooper and Slash’s Snakepit and also played on several tracks on Alanis Morissette’s 1995 multiplatinum album Jagged Little Pill.

Williams and Rudd initially rejoined AC/DC for the band’s 17th album Power Up in 2020 after parting ways with the band following the release of Rock or Bust in 2014.

Prior to recording Power Up—dedicated to founding guitarist Malcolm Young, who died in 2017—Rudd was replaced by Chris Slade during AC/DC’s Rock or Bust Tour, following his arrest in 2014. Williams had retired by the end of the same tour, and Johnson was later replaced in 2016 by Axl Rose, while he dealt with debilitating hearing loss.

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“It was pretty serious,” said Johnson said about his hearing loss in 2020. “I couldn’t hear the tone of the guitars at all. It was a horrible kind of deafness. I was literally getting by on muscle memory and mouth shapes. I was starting to really feel bad about the performances in front of the boys, in front of the audience. It was crippling. There’s nothing worse than standing there and not being sure.”

Johnson, who has been working with Asius Technologies founder Stephen Ambrose on an earbud that will allow him to perform without causing further damage, said the band is eager to tour again.

“It does take a lot of time to get a band like AC/DC together again,” said Johnson. “Most of the crew were out working with other people. Trying to get those guys back together again was tough but I’ve got my fingers crossed, everything is going ok. The most important thing about it all is the eagerness we all feel. The juices are running again.”

Photo: Josh Cheuse / Courtesy of Sony Music

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