Def Leppard 2015 is a different beast than Def Leppard from 1980,1981,1983 and 1987! Those are the years that On Through The Night,High N Dry ,Pyromania and Hysteria were released and for some that’s where it ends.
For myself when Steve Clark passed away in 1991 the riffs went with him and I only realized after Adrenalize just how much of a impact Clark had in the songs of Leppard!
So there’s a part of me that would understand why people would think that Lep has nose dived in regards to there studio output.
I agree X was a pretty mellow record, Euphoria was just a wanna be 80s record in the late 90s while Slang from 1996 is a classic! Lep reinvents there sound on Slang and I will review that album someday as for me it’s one of thsese under the radar classics! Kinda surprising to say that about a band that sold millions upon millions in the 80s but that just goes to show you how much the musical tide had changed by 1996.
2015 and I’m still a fan of Leppard. I have no desire whatsoever to see them live as I know they won’t top the In The Round Tour of 1992 but as far as recorded material goes I have bought everything they have put out so time after time I go back to Lep whenever new product hits the street and Kabooooooooom! October 30th 2015….Here we go…….
Now Lep as many artists/bands do they released a single called Lets Go which was to hype the self titled Def Lep Hype Machine and I think the Mighty HMO was the first one to talk about it and I think he was iffy with it! Once he said that I didn’t want to hear it just through the iPad i thought I’d wait it out til release day!
Joe Elliot,Rick Savage,Rick Allen,Phil Collen and Vivian Campbell show up in 2015 and will they make the grade?
LETS GO-the intro to Let’s Go is a 80s Hysteria Flashback. Is that the computer voice from Love Bites as well synched in there? Am I tripping? Yup , Joe and crew want me to think that and at this point in my life I’m a-ok with it! Ha what’s wrong with Flashbacks? If it wasn’t for them we’d have no memory at all! The production of this song is produced well by Lep and the prechorus is pure Gold I wish they woulda went with it a little further! The chorus itself is real good and call me a sucker for Ear Candy and well Let’s Go is just that! Like the middle part where they break out some acoustic action before the sonics of the guitars take over. Special thanks to Phil Collen for not over shredding on the guitar solo! Is HMO cringing? Haha…
DANGEROUS-sure Dangerous could have fit on Adrenalize side 2(would have been a improvement). This is the school of rock that Leppard built! Quicky single like tempo! Big crisp clear backing vocals! Fast neat Collen Pickin! Elliot keeps the party going! Dangerous is a great track. I love me some good Ol hard rock bubble gum!
MAN ENOUGH-Rick Savage(bass) and Rick Allen(drums) lock horns with a snappy bass line mixed with drums and I hear Queens Dragon Attack at the start of this tune and if your gonna swipe,swipe from some of the best! Seriously this has the mix of Dragon Attack and Another One Bites The Dust! Dig the sharp jabs of a piano sting in the middle of the track! It comes out of no where! Such a cool song ! It’s different Leppard but the same Leppard if that makes sense!
WE BELONG-this is your typical mid tempo-ishy Lepp song! Each guy in this tune takes a lead vocal line! Yup the two Ricks,Vivan,Phil and of course Joe all singing there say! Has any band done that before? I’m sure Ladano would know! We Belong is a good track and 4 tracks in its ok to take a little breather! Just a little! Nice guitar work…..
INVINCIBLE-Sav and Allen start off this song while Elliot lays down a real chill lead vocal along with a real good pre chorus! It ramps up the and the guitars are crisp,drums are locked in and it’s one of those songs like all Lepp songs actually that has backing vocals but there not the usual big time Lepp style backing vocals that we all know. Lepp is changing it on the fly!
SEA OF LOVE-This album gets real interesting starting with this track! Love the hard rock strumming of the guitars mixed with some cool drums n such from Allen and this is a new hard Rock n Rolla from the boys in 2015! This is a well put together track,different rocking but just flat out rocks! Love the lyrics “drifting on the Sea Of Love…..open your mind be careful what you find!”
ENERGIZED- almost drum machine like as its that kinda mellowish tune but the chorus with the “Energized …Whoah oh Whoah !” Will leave Ya humming it long after its done! Big time added bell and whistles added in regards to the percusion to this song and Lepp even fool the ol buzzard in me thinking I’m gonna skip this track ..Nope I didn’t and Nope I won’t! Wowzers did I just say that?
ALL TIME HIGH-I could see this tune being played live and why not! Love the start stop with the music and Elliot laying down the vocal in between sharp blasts of guitars and drums. It’s Lepp on overdrive as Savage lays down a straight ahead bass Line to keep the song rocking! The prechorus is rock solid quick with a good dose of don’t bore us get to the chorus! This is something that could have fit on sneakey at the end of High N Dry! Yeah it really could have….Crank the vid posted! Damn fine song….
BATTLE OF MY OWN-Zeppelin meet Leppard in this mash up of super cool acoustic jams seriously this is a Zep sounding tune especially when the drums kick in at the half way mark of the tune! You can hear the Zep like influence in the backing track of the song! This is a great song kids! Def Zep it is and while that may be its still Def Lepp! Listen to the vid ….
BROKE N BROKEN-HEARTED-another fantastic driven rocker with a great bass line while Allen on the drums plays straight ahead rock! The guitars are almost Rolling Stones like during the verse’s yet cranked to 10 on the Marshalls! Even Elliot throws down some great lines in this song ‘don’t be crass or I’ll kick your Ass!” Haha! Fair enough Joe even he tosses in a “gonna huff and puff and blow your playhouse down!” Kinda silly but it fits and why not have fun….if Bandana Michaels were to say that in song in the year 2015. I would scoff! Elliot though I’m ok with! Ha! Yup I’m playing favourites!….another song posted so you all don’t think I’m talking out of my arse!
FOREVER YOUNG- holy crap another great track! 3 minutes of pure brilliance! Yep! It’s all hear driving drums and guitars during the verses and a ass kicker of a catchy chorus! Seriously I already got 4 vids posted from this album! I could post the whole damn album it’s that good! Ear Candy is great Ear Candy and this is one of them!
LAST DANCE-is a folky acoustic vibe! Not a rocker by any stretch of the imagination but a good song never the less. Lepp dabble with a lot of acoustic on this album almost weaving in and out of various tracks! It helps when you got the songs to back it up…..this song is acoustic driven with a nice electric solo thrown in at the end…..
WINGS OF AN ANGEL- end of the album Gem! Wings Of A Angel is one of the best written Leppard songs I have heard in years! The song builds in the verse and when it hits the pre chorus its shifts back and upon first listen I was like …crap here we go but Lepp nail to a T a fantastic written chorus with great backing vocals and it must be Campbell who plays the solo as he co wrote this tune and what can you say! Leppard have schooled me bigtime in the do not count us out department! Notice taken! Crank ….no, Jack up the volume on the video!
BLIND FAITH-and so the album comes to a end with some acoustics and a chillness vibe all around the Lep Campfire. This song reminds me of a shot of the Beatles mixed with Wings and just as I hear that scenario! Kaboom comes the drums and some heavy devy guitars courtesy of Campbell and Collen and as quickly as they come they go back to the campfire for a end of song chill out!
IN CONCLUSION-In my humble Rock opinion this self titled Def Leppard 2015 Lep release is there best since Slang and perhaps even since Hysteria! Yeah it’s that good! Amazing that Joe and the boys had enough gas in the creative tank to crank out 14 tracks that are all pretty damn good in each there own way!
Leppard borrows from there past,borrow from some greats yet keeping a eye on the present and rolling it all into one big ball of Rock!
The thing that’s most surprisng is that the album for me gets real good from about track 6 on starting with Sea Of Love! The first 5 tracks are all good but man Leppard shift gears into a real mode of great writing, fantastic arrangements,production and performance and tempo changes on the last 8 tracks!
2015 and I never thought I would be saying that about a Leppard album!
Leppard 2015 is easily making my year end list at Ladanos site……