Music Living in “Hair Nation”


Def Leppard bringing the “Sugar” to Verizon Arena


By Richie Victorino 

Not to sell Def Leppard short, but the British rock band is still riding the coattails of their enormous success in the 1980s.

Let’s face it. No matter what new material they put out, nobody cares. Everyone wants to hear “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” “Photograph” and “Hysteria.” To be fair, the 25-year rock veterans had some success in the ’90s as well — “Two Steps Behind” and “Let’s Get Rocked” — but nothing can beat classic Def Leppard.

Well, folks surging into the Verizon Wireless Arena on Saturday, June 25, won’t be disappointed. Def Leppard is coming to Manchester to promote its second greatest-hits album release in a decade, Def Leppard - Rock Of Ages: The Definitive Collection, an assortment of Def Leppard classics from their debut album in 1980 to their last album, X,  released in 2002.

But as expected, most of this two-disc, 35-track album culls songs from the band’s very successful Pyromania (1983), Hysteria (1987) and Adrenalize (1992). Both Pyromania and Hysteria have earned the Diamond Award, which recognizes albums with sales surpassing 10 million. There is one new release on the album, a cover of Badfinger’s “No Matter What.”

It’s an amazing feat, really, to release another greatest-hits album, seeing as the band’s last greatest-hits album, Vault, released in 1995, went triple platinum and is still on the Billboard Top 200 Album Charts. However, there are a few new wiggles on this latest album, including video edits and acoustic recordings.

Opening up for Def Leppard at the Verizon is 1980s rock band Tesla, which was also popular during the days of glam rock. However, Tesla really never fit that bill, seeming to border on southern blues more than pop, which was evident when they covered the song “Signs.”

Good old ’80s rock bands such as Poison, Skid Row, Slaughter and now Def Leppard and Tesla, seem to have a niche in southern new hampshire.  Greg Kretschmar, host of Greg and The Morning Buzz on Rock 101 WGIR FM, believes it has something to do with attitude.

“There’s a lot of anger in music today,” Kretschmar said. “But this is something everyone grew up with. It’s all about the party. It’s all about the fun.”

After leaving the Queen City, Def Leppard will stick around for two more New England shows, (Connecticut and Maine) before hitting the road with Bryan Adams (“Summer of 69”) for a tour of 26 minor-league baseball stadiums, including Campanelli Stadium in Brockton, Mass., on July 6.



Hair Invasion


Who: Def Leppard with special guest Tesla

When: Saturday, June 25, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Verizon Wireless Arena, Manchester, N.H. Tickets are $45 and can be purchased through Ticketmaster, at at 868-7300 or at Filene’s.

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