Earlier this summer, totally square doctors demanded that AC/DC singer Brian Johnson immediately stop touring or risk going completely deaf. Despite it not being a very rockin’ thing to do, Johnson took their advice and the band replaced him with Axl Rose for the remainder of its tour. Though AC/DC didn’t specifically say it at the time, the assumption these days is that Johnson is now done touring forever—especially because one’s hearing doesn’t typically get better when you’re already an older guy in a rock band.
Now, AC/DC bassist Cliff Williams has announced that his time with the band has also come to an end, sharing a message on AC/DC’s YouTube channel that says it’s time for him to “step out.” This comes from Pitchfork, which reports that Williams will finish out the rest of the band’s Rock Or Bust Tour, and then that’ll be it. In the video, he says his decision is not because of Johnson leaving, but that he’s “just ready to get off the road.” He adds that now he’s going to spend time with his family and “just chill out.”
The AC/DC brand is pretty important to the rock economy, so at this point it’s still unclear if this means the end of the group as a whole, or if Williams will be replaced like Johnson was. Maybe they should call Duff McKagan? Then AC/DC can just gradually become Guns N’ Roses.