The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world




Suppoprted by EMERALD CITY




Live Wire
Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be
Problem Child
Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap
Rock n’ Roll Damnation
Sin City
What’s Next to The Moon
High Voltage
Ain’t No Fun Waiting Round To Be A Millionaire
If You Want Blood
Whole Lotta Rosie
Up to My Neck In You
Highway to Hell
It’s A Long Way To The Top
Let There Be Rock



I think it was that great English 18th Century essayist, moralist, literary critic, biographer, editor and lexicographer Dr Samuel Johnson who famously said ‘A man who is tired of AC/DC is tired of life’ (or something very similar). Well he was right!


The Charles Hotel is packed to the rafters tonight with a motley crew of fans of great live music, hard rock, AC/DC and most importantly the local lad himself: Bon Scott. It’s always a time to reflect on what might have happened if Bon hadn’t sadly left us, but I’m glad to say there’s far fewer of us dwelling on the past and far more of us in the crowd just hear to hear the timeless music he has left as his legacy.






Local lads ‘Emerald City’ tease us with their own brand of fired up rock and roll before the main act begins and whether it’s the great acoustics at the Charles or just a sparkling night for the guys tonight they sound probably the best I’ve heard them. It’s great fun 80’s infused hard rock and Having three decent backing singers doesn't hurt their sound either. They get a great reception from an appreciative crowd and thank James Morley for putting on tonight’s entertainment.


Dedicating a song about having fun with a best friends mum going out to Gasoline Inc, raised a few eyebrows from Gas fans and they close with two of their best songs: ‘My little secret’ and ‘Not ready’.






But we’re not here for the support band, and after a brief interlude James and this year’s Raise The Flag crew hit the stage. Skenie of course is here from last time round where he shared the stage with Dave Gleeson, this year he has the stage and the wine and the ladies all to himself.


On guitar we have last years axis of James Morley and Mick Adkins who do a great job; and replacing Simon Wright on bass is Perth and the Baby Animals’ very own master of the four string – Eddie Parise who these days plays in the wonderful Creedence tribute band Proud Mary (fronted by  Ryan from Ragdoll).


Now if you want a faithful recreation of the glorious sound of the Bon Scott years this is as close as you are likely to get, with James anchored in the Malcolm Young role all of those onstage get to show off their chops while sticking faithfully to the back catalogue. If I have one minor quibble it’s that the setlist is exactly the same as last year, but that’s more of an observation for consideration next time!







It’s easy to forget just how great the songs of this vintage were when you think now that AC/DC has added another 30 add years onto the clock, but you have to remember that the core of tonight’s setlist is the core of the set that AC/DC are still playing these days. Somehow though this older stuff just seems to have so much more life, or maybe that’s just me? Maybe not then, judging by the crowd!


Anyway starting off with a trifecta like ‘Live Wire’; ‘Hell Ain’t A Bad Place To Be’; and ‘Problem Child’ can’t be too bad can it! And to be honest from the off the crowd are completely into the performance, but most of us of course have not just come here to listen and watch, there are very few in the crowd not mouthing all of the words! 


In a night with now lowlights, songs like ‘Sin City’ – dedicated to all the pretty girls here tonight, goes down a storm and ‘High Voltage’ almost raises the roof, with the crowd singing as one. The less heard songs too really do take you back: I always forget how great a song like ‘Ain't no fun waiting round to be a millionaire’ is, until I hear it and a song like ‘If You Want Blood’ is the sonic reply to why rock music is so important to everyone gathered in this room.






There’s a nice story about super-roadie Pat Picket and the night he took a young Skenie to see ‘Rosie’ (without letting on who she was), as Skenie tells us – a lovely old girl but big, and literally all over the couch she sat on. The punch line of course being that once he found out who she was he ‘would have’…


‘Whole lotta Rosie’ is of course timeless and by the time we hit ‘Up to My Neck In You’ Skenie is up standing on top of the soundboard at the back of the room.


The close of the night is flawless – just look at that setlist! ‘Jailbreak’ kicks out the jams and whilst I appreciate everyone else in the room love it ‘TNT’ has never been one of my favourite AC/DC songs (maybe it’s because everyone plays it). For a night of entertainment and celebration Raise The Flag can’t really be beaten and as a celebration of the music of the late great Bon Scott its pretty emotional for some (maybe helped by an ale or too) to be in the room with people who are here for the same purpose as you are – a love of great rock and roll. Amen to that. Until nect year raise a glass to Bon!










images and words by Mark Diggins