Rock! Rock! (Til You Drop)!
If you are one of those people who stream music (and by all recent accounts, that is most of you), listen up! Def Leppard has finally joined the party!!
As of this week, you can stream and download all of the band’s classic albums and even the more recent ones you might have missed.
You can take the entire Lep journey starting with their 1979 EP and travel on through the night until you reach their eponymous 2015 release (which is probably the worst album they could have self-tilted but whatever). Starting as blue-collar riff miners from Sheffield, England, the band earned their stripes during the New Wave of British Metal even if they shied away from the mythic imagery of Judas Priest, Saxon, and Iron Maiden.
Trading in the swords and sorcery of the NWOBM for chart-topping hits and, let’s be honest, to meet more women, Def Leppard transformed into one of the biggest stadium rock bands of all-time with the success of Pyromania (1983) and the earth-conquering Hysteria in 1987. Unlike just about every glam-metal album of the decade, Hysteria was short on filler. Every song on Hysteria belongs in the Mutt Lange Museum of Epic Production with layers upon layers of guitars surfing over the thunderous waves of Rick Allen’s newly crafted electronic drum kit.
As good as Hysteria sounds even today, a lot of what came after it teeters on the edge of mediocrity. At least now, you can stream them all and find some new Lep favorites. The 2006 covers album Yeah! is the only one that captures their 80s magic. On Yeah!, the band revels in the influences that inspired them to play music from the twin guitar attack of Thin Lizzy to the glam stomp sparkle of T-Rex and Sweet. Heard through their influences, Def Leppard sounds more like Def Leppard than they have in a very long time. If you’re new to their post-Hysteria work, start with Yeah! and explore from there. Here is a playlist to set your rocket soaring this week: