Ahead of the release of ACCEPT's new album "Too Mean To Die", ACCEPT guitarist Wolf Hoffmann was interviewed by the "Australian Rock Show" podcast. During the chat, which can be streamed below, Hoffmann was asked about ACCEPT's recording of the unreleased AC/DC song "I'm A Rebel". He confirmed that the musical arrangement of ACCEPT's 1980 recording is "actually the same" as the demo recorded by AC/DC in 1976. "I'm A Rebel" was penned by Alexander Young — older brother of Angus and Malcolm Young — and is one of the rarest AC/DC recordings.
"I remember we actually worked with Alexander Young," Wolf revealed (hear audio below). "I think he came to the studio, if I remember properly, but he still didn't end up producing. I think he just supervised our demos or something, if I recall correctly. 'Cause we made some demo tracks in the same studio. I think he came out, and we started working with him. And somehow, maybe it was the English, and maybe there was a translation problem — somehow we didn't really get along with one another. I mean, we didn't really dislike him, but somehow it didn't feel like the right fit. And I can't recall for sure why we didn't work together more, but I remember he came out for a day or so."
Comparing the two versions of the song, Hoffmann said: "I think it's a brilliant track, but I actually do remember that the original version demo with AC/DC had some magic that got a little bit lost when we [ACCEPT] re-recorded it, because it was Bon Scott on the original demo that we heard. And it's still in the archives somewhere, but, of course, it's locked away forever and it's never gonna see the light of day. But it does exist, because I still heard it a few years ago on somebody's iPhone — namely the guy who actually introduced us to that song was our from our publishing company in Hamburg. And he's since passed away, and it probably stayed on his iPhone and will never see the light of day."
AC/DC's version of "I'm A Rebel" reportedly featured Alex Young on lead vocals, while Bon Scott (who was allegedly very drunk at the time) did backing vocals. It was recorded without the band's usual producers, George Young (also a younger brother of Alex Young) and Harry Vanda. A very rough version of what is purported to be the AC/DC version of "I'm A Rebel" is available on YouTube and can be streamed below.
U.D.O., the band led by former ACCEPT singer Udo Dirkschneider, released a new recording of "I'm A Rebel" in 1998 on the album "No Limits". A live version of "I'm A Rebel" was included on the 2001 U.D.O. release "Live From Russia".
"Too Mean To Die" will be released on January 29 via Nuclear Blast. The LP will be the group's first without bassist Peter Baltes, who exited ACCEPT in November 2018. He has since been replaced by Martin Motnik. ACCEPT's lineup has also been expanded with the addition of a third guitarist, Philip Shouse, who originally filled in for Uwe Lulis during 2019's "Symphonic Terror" tour, before being asked to join the band permanently.
"Too Mean To Die" was recorded in Nashville, Tennessee with British producer Andy Sneap (JUDAS PRIEST, MEGADETH), who has been responsible for the studio sound of ACCEPT since 2010.