Before Def Leppard, heavy metal was associated with leather, studs, and motorcycles. After a pair of mega-platinum albums in the '80s, Leppard proved that pop hooks, hard rock, and good looks could equal massive success, hatching a slew of imitators in the process. Despite numerous setbacks such as drummer Rick Allen losing an arm in an accident, followed by the death of guitarist Steve Clark, the British band persevered, achieving even more popularity. Though they inspired legions of hair metal bands, their longevity is a testament to their enduring musical legacy.
DISC 1 for Pyromania (CD) Album
By Def Leppard (Artist)
Japanese only SHM-CD (Super High Material CD - playable on all CD players) paper sleeve pressing. Universal. 2008.
Def Leppard's rock sensibilities shot them right to the top of the charts in the '80s. On their third album, Pyromania, the band reconciled new wave melodicism with heavy metal and catchy hooks without compromising any of its edge. The album has sold over 10 million copies, due in part to heavy rotation on MTV. But even without their ubiquitous television presence, anthems like "Rock of Ages" and "Foolin'" still had the stuff that drove the kids crazy. Bursts of screaming guitars and simple power riffs joined forces with choruses that begged to be shouted along to. Guitarists Phil Collen and Steve Clarke may have provided all the pyrotechnics on Pyromania, but the focal point of Def Leppard's sound, particularly for their teenage female fans, was singer Joe Elliott's voice (and, of course, his hair). The record--an essential brick in the foundation of '80s metal--also contains the hit "Photograph." --Steve Gdula
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