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Def Leppard Tour History Fan Archive.

Media Review - Def Leppard, Ulster Hall, Belfast Northern Ireland By Paul McCanny

Well it's been four years since the Leps played Belfast. Last time was at the start of the Adreanalize world tour. That time they packed out the Kings Hall (capacity around 7000). This time the show had to be switched from the Kings Hall to the smaller Ulster Hall (capacity around 2000) just two weeks prior to the gig. The drop in interest for the band is partly due to the current musicial climate and partly due to the album Slang being a lacklustre effort. The material played tonight that was the least memorable was off Slang.

The band kicked off with "Rock Rock 'Til You Drop" and straight into "Action". The capacity crowd loved this stuff. Unfortunately a muffled sound system somewhat muted the kick that this music needs. Songs such as"Hysteria" and "Foolin" are definite crowd pleasers. The same can't be said of the "Slang" material.

The band looked as though they were enjoying themselves but I'm sure they were dissapointed with the change to a smaller venue.

This was a hometown gig for Viv Cambell (who looked like his former employer Ronnie James Dio ..long scraggy hair, black top, silver cross). Viv sang a short song during the acoustic set the name of which I could not make out due to the muffled sound. The acoustic set was an interesting change pace when they performed "Two Steps Behind".

For me the best songs of the night was when they played "Bringin' On The Heartbreak/Switch 625". They performed this as originally arranged on the "High 'N Dry" album, much better than the arrangement on the "Hysteria" tour when I last saw them.

The band themselves still looked like youthful rockers. Joe Elliott is still the energetic frontman without any traces of posturing that would make him look timelocked in the '80's. Rick Allen sporting a Brad Pitt type of look with a ponytail and beard did a splendid job on the drums playing more aggressively than ever on a kit that appeared to have next to no electronic gadgets. Ric Savages approach is a little less '80's than before. Gone is his long poodle permed hair. Phil Collen is a great player but comes across as having no attitude. He looks a little ridiculous with his tightly cropped very thinned out bleached hair, numerous dainty silver earrings and bare chest. His image would be more at home in a dodgy Soho club.

All in all a good gig but not a GREAT one. The band need to go back to the drawing board and re-assess themselves a bit.

By Paul McCanny @ The Belfast Telegraph 1996.