AC/DC ready to dump drummer Phil Rudd owing to murder allegations

  • AFP, New York
  • Updated: Nov 20, 2014 14:47 IST

Hard rockers AC/DC say that they're ready to go on tour without drummer Phil Rudd, who faced accusations that he hired a hitman in New Zealand.

Promoting their upcoming album in New York, singer Brian Johnson and guitarist Angus Young both hinted that the veteran Australian band was looking to replace Rudd ahead of a tour next year.

"We're talking about criminal courts here, and we're talking about judges, we're talking about juries," Johnson told radio shock jock Howard Stern on Wednesday.

"We're talking about people saying you're not getting your passport back here, all of this kind of stuff. And there's nothing we can do about it.

"We are going to go on tour and nothing is going to stop us," he said.

The rockers stressed that they had worked with drummers other than Rudd, who has played on-and-off with AC/DC since 1975 and settled in the New Zealand coastal community of Tauranga in 1983.

"When you're in a rock 'n' roll band, you move to the front. You never look what's going on behind you," Young said.

Prosecutors earlier this month filed a murder-for-hire case against Rudd and then quickly dropped it, citing insufficient evidence.

But Rudd, 60, is still accused of drug possession and threatening to kill, which carries a jail term of up to seven years.

Since the charges emerged, Johnson and Young have said that they struggled to work with Rudd during the recording of the album, "Rock or Bust," which comes out on December 2.

AC/DC is already playing without Malcolm Young, the brother of Angus and a fellow founding member who is suffering dementia and has retired to a care facility in Sydney.

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