Def Leppard – The Collection, Volume Two – Album Review

After a year since the release of The Collection Volume 1, Def Leppard finally releases Volume 2.  And as I did with the first, I bought the Vinyl edition.  Volume 1 was sensational and if you want to check out that review, click on The Collection Volume 1.  As I normally do with these box sets, I focus mostly on the packaging and the bonus material as the main albums we all know and love or we wouldn’t be buying this set.  I want to know if we are getting a bang for our buck

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Look at all the albums and songs you are getting. There are 4 Studio albums and 4 albums of bonus material and there a total of 10 LPs in the set as 2 of the albums are double LPs.  It is heavy and chock of great tunes that will give you hours and hours of fun. I always save the sticker that is on the plastic wrapping and this time is no different.  Here is a summary of the box set.

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Friday New Releases – June 21st

Welcome to a very busy Friday of releases.  There are a bunch of releases I am interested in getting, but only one I am buying as that one is so expensive, I can’t afford anything else.  As Summer keeps getting hotter, so does the new music.  My choices are highlighted in Blue. What are you interested in getting? Let me know what you want and what I missed and most of all…enjoy all the music.  Have a great weekend.

  • 71014pEYJEL._SX522_.jpg  Def Leppard – Box Set Volume Two – (Mercury):  Finally!!! Volume Two is upon us.  Volume One was so awesome, now Def Leppard bring us the next set with the albums Adrenalize, Retroactive, Slang and Euphoria all on vinyl (or CD is you want).  I don’t have any of these on vinyl so this is an absolute MUST!!! You also get 4 Vinyl full of Bonus tracks, rarities and live songs that is right…FOUR!!!.  What is extra cool about this is that a friend of mine was asked for songs from his collection to go on this set and there of 7 songs of his (live shows, I believe) that are on here and he is credited!! Way to go Mike Ladano!!!

  • A1ZmIUwu8gL._SX522_  Collective Soul – Blood – (Fuzze Flex Records):  I am excited about this one as well.  Collective Soul bring us album #10!!  I am glad they are still going strong and they keep getting better along with it.  I haven’t heard anything off this one yet as I want to take it all in at once.  These Georgia boys don’t usually disappoint so it should be great.

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Def Leppard – ‘The Story So Far…The Best of Volume 2’ – Album Review (#RSD – 2019)

I bought ‘The Story So Far…The Best of’ back in 2018 and at the time not realizing it was only Volume 1.  I also bought the CD Deluxe to get all the music as the vinyl didn’t have everything.  Well, now it does.  For Record Store Day 2019, Def Leppard released Volume 2 for those suckers, like me, who will buy everything they put out.

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Now Volume 1 has all the songs from their 3 biggest albums (Pyromania, Hysteria and Adrenalice).  Volume 2 covers pretty much everything else.  And for that, it has a much better selection of songs than Volume 1 for me.  It covers the band’s history better and is a lot more diverse and entertaining.

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But before we get on about the set list, let’s talk the album cover.  It is styled the same as volume 1 with some alterations to color.  The biggest pet peeve for me is the picture when you open up the gatefold (oh yeah, 2 LP set with gatefold).  It is the same DAMN concert picture as the first!!  Really, you couldn’t come up with a different picture. At least the pictures of the individual band members are different.

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Tesla – ‘Shock’ – Album Review

Tesla decided to make a new album after saying the last one was…well the last one.  Thankfully, that is not the case.  Tesla’s new album is called ‘Shock’ and there has been a lot said of this new album and about how much it sounds like Def Leppard since it was produced by Phil Collen, lead guitarist of the band.

And let me tell you, they are 100% RIGHT!!  It really does!!  Mostly, it is from the backing vocals.  On a lot of the songs, the backing vocals have been done in the same way Lep does it.  In fact, all the backing singers sound exactly like Phil. Now, I am not saying sounding like Lep is a bad thing.  It is, however, a little distracting and a little detracting. 

From the opening track, “You Won’t Take Me Alive”, “Taste Like”, “I Want Everything” and “Afterlife” it is the classic Lep sound.  They aren’t bad songs at all and they do grow on you with each listen.  It is just strange.  At times I feel like I am listening to a Lep album with a new lead singer.

The album is also very soft at time.  It has several ballads (“We Can Rule The World”, “Love is a Fire” and “Forever Loving You”) and even a breezy little song called “California Love Song”.  At times you could compare this album to Def Leppard’s X (often called the “Love” album for it’s ballad heavy track list).

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Def Leppard – The Albums Ranked Worst to First

If you read my site, you know Def Leppard is one of my all-time favorite bands, if not the #1 band on my list.  And for that, this list was extremely hard for me to do, yet easy as well.  I will already go ahead and say it, there is not a horrible album in this bunch only some I like more than others and yet a few that are absolute no-brainers as the top choices.  And yes, I am biased.

Speaking of top choices, my Top 5 is my Top 5 because each album is completely different.  The band completely changed up the sound and style on each of these albums and when the band does that, for me they hit it out of the park.

From the very beginning in 1980 with their debut and all the way up to today, the band has been mainstay in my musical journey.  In 2019, they will be inducted in to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and all I can say is it is about damn time!!!  They received the highest public vote so I am not the only one that things these guys from England are pretty darn great.

So, let’s get to it.  Here is my favorite Def Leppard albums from the worst one to the very best.  I hope you enjoy it.

WORST – SONGS FROM THE SPARKLE LOUNGE (2008)

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Def Leppard – ‘Live at the Top’ (Bootleg) – Album Review

I have been looking for Def Leppard bootlegs since I got back in to collecting. I have found Kiss, Whitesnake, GNR, but hadn’t found a Leppard one until now.  The first thing that caught my attention was that cover.  Love it.  So bright, so detailed, just beautiful.  A lot of work went into that cover and I find that odd for a bootleg since most I find just slap a picture of the band on the cover that isn’t even from that era of the recording.

Well, they did that hear as well as the back cover is a picture of Joe Elliott from around 1987…which is when this was released.  The problem is that the recordings are not from that year.

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When was it recorded?  I am so glad you asked.

A1 to B1 recorded at the BBC’s Paris Theatre, London, England, 22nd August 1979.
B2 to B6 recorded at the Reading Festival, Reading, England, 24th August 1980.

“On Through the Night’ came out in March 1980, so the first side of this was recorded prior to that album coming out which all these songs are on.  Their first EP had come out in January 1979 which “Overture” and “Rocks Off” were from that one only at the time as they would be released on the debut as well.

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My Sunday Song – “Switch 625” by Def Leppard

For My Sunday Song #126, the instrumental we will be covering is “Switch 625” by none other than Def Leppard.  For a band that is not noted for doing instrumentals, when they did one, they definitely got it right.  The song is off the band’s second album ‘High & Dry’ and is still played today in concert as a tribute to the writer of the song, the late, great Steve Clark.

The song bleeds effortlessly after “Bringin’ On the Heartbreak” with such a smooth transition you would swear it is part of the song.  The long, unedited version of the song.  The song itself is a beautiful representation of all that was great about the god-given gift of Steve’s guitar playing.

I love the dual guitars battling it out. I can picture Pete & Steve going back and forth and playing off each other (now I am making an assumption that Pete played on the recorded version). It also has such a great melody and if it had lyrics would have made for another great Def Leppard ballad I am sure.

In fact, producer Mutt Lange wanted to add lyrics but after battling out with Joe Elliot, no lyrics were added.  Joe felt the song was perfect the way it was and no need to mess it up with his voice (of course that isn’t a direct quote, I’m making assumptions but the story itself is true).

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Def Leppard – Hysteria: The Singles Box Set – Album Review

Def Leppard have been milking the Hysteria album for years and why not as it is their most popular album.  It was an album that would reach Diamond status with well over 10 million copies sold.  It would produce 7 singles in the US and even 6 in it’s home country of the UK.

In celebration of the albums 30 years, they released a beautiful box set of the full album which I reviewed a long while back (Hysteria).  Now, they have decided to release the Singles Box set to celebrate those 7 singles and for fun they released two more singles plus gave us an extra Spanish Version of one of their singles (Spanish cover, not sung in Spanish although that would’ve been cool).  This gives us a nice set of 10 singles plus their B-Sides.

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There were two things that made the Hysteria Singles so special.  One was the cover of those singles were a puzzle piece that when put together, they created the album artwork.  The second thing was that the B-Sides were all unreleased tracks.  As a collector, they were awesome.

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2018 – A Year in Review and More

2018 was a tough year at times and the best year at times, it all depends on my perspective when looking back at it I guess.  For my blog, we had a banner year with a vast improvement over the prior year.  It is hard to believe that people continue to come back to the site to read what I have to say.  It is rather humbling and much appreciated.  I don’t make any money on this, it is all for fun so to know people find it and come back motivates me to keep doing it.  I never thought I would be able to come up with material, but with over 730 posts so far, I seem to keep finding stuff to write about.

I will keep it to the blog as far as highlights for this past year, except I did turn 50, so that is pretty cool.  They say that the first 50 years of childhood are the hardest, and I would agree. It should be smooth sailing from here.

The first highlight, is that I have finally reached 100,000 views  on the site since its inception which was about 2 years & 7 1/2 months ago.  That is hard to believe. Now, I hope to do 100,000 views in 2019 alone.  That is at least my goal.

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As far as posts, what were the biggest posts of the year.  Here are the Top 5 new posts that were done in 2018:

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Def Leppard – ‘The Story So Far…The Best of’ – Album Review

Def Leppard decided to grace us with yet another Greatest Hits Collection right before the holidays. How nice of them!  It is exactly what I needed…uhh…yeah…NO!!  No offense Lep, I am a huge fan, but why do we need another greatest hits collection.  We have some solid ones already.

I get it.  They have been riding a pretty big wave this last year with the awesome success of their arena and stadium tour with Journey (You can read about those here for Def Leppard and here for Journey).  They have picked up some fans this past year and also they were nominated for the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame (FINALLY!!!).  All-in-all, a pretty big year so why not cap it off with a new greatest hits set.

Now, they released 3 different sets.  One was a single CD set, a Deluxe 2CD set and a Vinyl Set (2LPs).  So what are the differences between the sets?  I am glad you asked.  We will start with the single CD and the Vinyl Editions.  Both of these sets have 16 tracks.  Okay, the CD has 17 because it includes the new track which is a cover of Depeche Mode’s song “Personal Jesus”.  Now that I mention that, the Vinyl set has that song 2 but is on a separate 7″ Single and the B-Side is the bands new Christmas song “We All Need Christmas”…we will get to those two new songs later.

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