Release Date: Oct. 30-2015
No need for a history lesson about Def Leppard and my best stories regarding them are simple.
I have visited Steve Clark‘s grave in England, the only celebrity grave I have ever visited. He was one of the first guitar players I was awestruck by.
My transition from 80’s pop a la Madonna (whom I still love and listen to) and Steve Winwood (whom I still love and listen to) was while on a family vacation and snagged my brothers Hysteria cassette. Didn’t give it back for the rest of the 2-week vacation! When we returned home I went to the library and checked out a Twisted Sister and W.A.S.P. record. My path was set. Let it be known I left the original KISS album there, recalling being scared by those guys at a young age. It would be another year before I revisited KISS and fell in love with everything about them!
Had lawn tickets for Def Leppard, Poison and Cheap Trick at the Molson Amphitheatre a few years back. Talk about a dream line-up for my wife and I to see and hear. As I went to get drinks I was pulled into the booth for local radio station trivia and upgrade your tix. I won, can’t recall what the question was, ended up front row centre. Amazing show by all and Def Leppard still sound and play great live! I have no problem admitting I was in awe with the shape Phil keeps himself in, absolutely in awe!
Here is what I think of the latest release.
”Let’s Go”: Yes it sounds like “Pour Some Sugar On Me” with a One Direction chorus, that works for me, sounds great! For those that call this “too boy band sounding” I recall Def Leppard doing this well before NKOTB and the like…and what’s wrong with a great sticky sweet chorus anyway?
”Dangerous”: A very good rocker!
”Man Enough”: Not the groove for me, not one bit.
”We Belong”: Cool that all bandmates sing and a good tune.
”Invincible”: Generic rocker.
”Sea of Love”: Good chorus but the song doesn’t sound quite finished/polished.
”Energized”: A song with this title should be just that, it is not.
”All Time High”: Another generic rocker that is just a tad better than “Invincible”.
”Battle of My Own”: Please guys, don’t do the acoustic thing again, you did it well a couple times; really well, but that is done. Too much of a Zeppelin rip as well.
”Broke ‘n’ Brokenhearted”: another solid rocker with great guitar riffing.
”Forever Young”: Doesn’t sound finished enough, sorry guys I like your finished and polished/produced sound.
“Last Dance”: Another slow tempo song, nothing hooking me here.
”Wings of an Angel”: Getting the feeling this should be a 10 song record. Good chorus, rest of song is not a finished product.
“Blind Faith”: Finishing slow and low.
Overall this is the best sounding and showing from Def Leppard since Slang in my opinion. I liked Slang for the more raw side of Def Leppard, loved it in fact. Other than that record, and their first 2 back in the early 80’s which are great and raw as well, Leppard is held and will always be held to a high standard of finished and produced songs. Stick with that is what I say because this album starts so very strong with the first 2 songs and then tails off quickly. I think they could have worked 10 songs much better into this because 5 are strong and the other 5 are close, drop 4 completely for now at least. I do understand they consider this their most experimental album, and good on them for that. What it comes down to is I am buying a handful of songs rather than the entire record.
– Blair De Abreu