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Def Leppard Tour History Fan Archive.

Media Review - Def Leppard music satisfies audience By Vickie Snow

You could feel the energy in the air just maneuvering down Harlem Avenue and walking through the gates of the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre on Wednesday night. The 28,000-capacity venue in Tinley Park was abuzz with fans, from the food court to the back of the lawn, juggling guitar-shaped beer cups, scouting the $40 T-shirts and other concert gear, and generally acting like the day they saw their first big concert at age 16.

After all, many fans first experienced Def Leppard and Journey live in the '80s. And now they're high on nostalgia, with kids in tow.

Despite a downpour and humidity from hell, the vibe continued on through to Def Leppard's 11 p.m. encore of "Pour Some Sugar on Me" and "Love Bites" and afterward, when westbound Interstate 80 was reduced to one lane for nighttime construction. Even the bumper-to-bumper pace didn't dampen fans' spirits, and their singing, screaming and hanging out of car windows provided occasional comic relief along the way.

That said, let's get down to real business. Def Leppard, the British heavy metal band that formed in 1977 and shot to stardom in 1983 with the release of "Pyromania," relied on neither female dancers nor flashy pyrotechnics, but music that contributed to more than 65 million in album sales.

A video screen as wide as the stage showed amplifiers cranked to 11 - a common heavy metal joke of sorts from the movie "Spinal Tap" - as Def Leppard, now in their 40s, opened with "Let's Get Rocked" and "Make Love Like a Man" (both from 1992's "Adrenalize").

Vocalist Joe Elliott, in black leather pants despite the wretched mugginess, and the shirtless trio of bassist Rick Savage and guitarists Phil Collen and Vivian Campbell lined up at the front of the stage in true rock star fashion, bolted around the double staircase and sweated it out under five large lighting rigs.

It's always fun to see a big rock show. And it's not to be amazed by drummer Rick Allen, who lost his left arm in a car accident in 1984 and now relies on some fancy footwork, as was broadcast on the video screens.

The 90-minute set was a decent collection of hits, including "Photograph," "Foolin'," "Animal," "Rocket" and "Bringin' on the Heartbreak."

Showing a bit of versatility, Def Leppard did revved-up covers from the 12th studio album "Yeah!" with Savage playing a slow, funky bass intro to T. Rex's "Rock On," and the bee-boppin' crowd chiming in "Ooh girl want you" for Badfinger's "No Matter What." Def Leppard's 47-date tour with Journey was extended due to strong ticket sales. And while Def Leppard headlined, the house was packed for Journey's set, too, although vocalist Steve Augeri was absent due to a chronic throat infection.

By Vickie Snow @ Daily Southtown 2006.