AC/DC’s 1980 opus ‘Back in Black’ has been certified 25 times Platinum in the United States with sales of over 25million units.
The seminal album was officially crowned 25 times Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) last Friday (6th December 2019).
AC/DC's ‘Back in Black’ hit the one million sales barrier Stateside in October 1980 three months after its release, and it hit five million sales in October 1984 before reaching ten million sales in October 1990.
On 13th December 2007, the album was certified 22× Platinum by the RIAA, meaning the record has picked up three million album sales in the last 12 years alone.
According to the RIAA, ‘Back in Black’ is the fourth best-selling album of all time in American behind Eagles’ ‘Their Greatest Hits (1971–1975)’ (38 million sales), Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ (33 million) and Eagles’ ‘Hotel California’ (26 million).
Led Zeppelin’s ‘IV’ is the fifth best seller having shifted 23 million units and Fleetwood Mac’s ‘Rumours’ is sixth with 20 million sales.
Released in the US on 25th July 1980 and six days later in the UK, ‘Back in Black’ has sold an estimated 50 million copies globally and is the second best-selling album of all time worldwide following Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’.
Recorded in the Bahamas from April to May 1980 just months after the death of Bon Scott, ‘Back in Black’ is AC/DC’s album to feature Brian Johnson on vocals.
The album spawned the singles ‘You Shook Me All Night Long’, ‘Hells Bells’, ‘Rock and Roll Ain’t Noise Pollution’ and, of course, the massive title track ‘Back in Black’.
Rumours that AC/DC are returning with a new album and Brian Johnson back on vocal duties have been widespread for over a year.
In August 2018, a series of photos emerged online that depicted the Brian, Phil Rudd and engineer Mike Fraser outside Vancouver’s Warehouse Studios where Stevie and Angus Young were also spotted that week.
The speculation intensified weeks later when JAM Magazine quoted sources who claimed that the new AC/DC album will be dedicated to the memory of Malcolm Young and feature his distinctive rhythm guitar playing lifted from recording sessions several years before ‘Black Ice’.
Then in January 2019, grindcore band Terrorizer revealed on Facebook that Brian told them he had rejoined AC/DC.
They wrote: “We ran into Brian Johnson from AC/DC at the airport today after the flight home and we asked him about the rumours of him being on the new AC/DC album and he said 'yes' and that he is 'sick of denying it.' So that was a cool surprise ending to the tour."
In April, the band’s long-term engineer Mike Fraser confirmed that AC/DC have been in the studio “doing something” and weeks later US radio DJ Eddie Trunk quoted “reliable sources” who told him AC/DC will "absolutely" tour with Brian Johnson.
Over the weekend, ex-Twisted Sister frontman Dee Snider posted a series of tweets saying that “all four surviving members” are involved in AC/DC’s new album and it will feature tracks laid down by the late great Malcolm Young.
He died. RIP Malcolm Young. But all four surviving members have reunited WITH tracks recorded by Malcolm while he was still alive. Malcolm's nephew Stevie Young is replacing him (he's done this a couple of times before). It's as close as you can get to the original band. @acdc https://t.co/UQn0xITfWg— Dee Snider (@deesnider) December 7, 2019
Yup and yup! https://t.co/1EuSwLCVDj— Dee Snider (@deesnider) December 7, 2019