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Black Ice is the upcoming fifteenth studio album by Australian hard rock band AC/DC, set to be released on October 16, 2008. It will be their first album in eight years, since the release of Stiff Upper Lip in 2000, the longest gap between AC/DC's studio albums to date.
In a 2004 interview, Brian Johnson revealed that for the first time since the 1988 album Blow Up Your Video, he would be handling lyrics. He also said that Angus Young has written harder riffs than those on Stiff Upper Lip.
As of January 2006, AC/DC were working on the album, and according to Malcolm Young at that time, "The band are currently writing and recording material for the eagerly anticipated next album, but no release date has been set."
In April 2008, AC/DC's official website confirmed the release of the new album with producer Brendan O'Brien and audio engineer Mike Fraser, but did not confirm a release date.
In June 2008, Reuters reported that in the U.S. the new album will be distributed solely by Walmart stores although HMV's have displayed October dates for the new album in Canada.
On August 15, AC/DC recorded the video to accompany the first single from the album , "Rock 'n Roll Train", in London.
On the same day, Rolling Stone magazine released a very brief appraisal of the album, citing that "Brian wails about skies on fire, blood in his eyes, storms raging, lightning flashes, hard rain and pretty women...Angus Young shreds throughout...Malcom Young, Cliff Williams and Phil Rudd - are solid as a rock." as well as making a surprise statement that Angus Young uses a slide in the song "Stormy May Day". The magazine also named several tracks before the official release of the track listing.
On August 18th, the release date of Black Ice was confirmed on the band's official website.
The album is an exclusive Walmart album which is released on October 16, 2008. Several days after the original version of the album was made available for pre-order, the band's website store listed two variations of cover artwork available for the CD in addition to the original red logo. These were a yellow logo and a silver logo. All three versions feature the exact same music and content with a black background. However, the gray designs behind the band's logo are different on each of the two different covers. There is also a Deluxe Edition hardcover available which will contain a 30-page booklet with exclusive new illustrations, studio and live photographs of AC/DC.
On September 19, 2008, the track War Machine was posted in its entirety on acdcrocks.com, as well as the full video for Rock N Roll Train being posted on acdc.com.