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Monday, 3rd November 2003

Frankfurt, Germany - Fan Reviews

Fan Review - By Dani

The Jahrhunderthalle is one of the smaller venues in Frankfurt. Maybe 3000 Persons can attend a show. You can choose between seatrows on the balcony or you are rocking right in front of the stage-like I did.

The show wasn't sold out, but is it any wonder? No big announcements about the show, Def Leppard weren't playing in Germany for shows since 1996, other concerts at the same time in Frankfurt, fans are getting older and have some other hobbies (blabla). It was a big coincidence that I found out Def Leppard touring through Germany! In fact there has to be more promotion for Def Leppard shows in Germany.

Neverthless: in my opinion there was a great atmosphere. The crowd loved Def Leppard and sang every song right from the start. There were people from U.S.A, Italy, Poland, Japan...and Germany (Hi, to the Italian guys in the front row- you are the best!) I think, Joe and the other awesome bandmembers were really surprised about the enthusiastic fans. Some guys came only for Skid Row but they turned to Def Leppard fans too during the gig.

I can't tell you much about Skid Row, I have no background information about the bandmembers and the music they usually play. But they rocked us and I think it´s not bad to have them as support band. I only knew two songs they played: 18 and Life and I Remember You. Skid Row were playing 45 minutes.

The starter at this evening was Ricky Warwick, a real nice guitarist with nice songs but a bit of a bore (sorry). It changed when Vivian came out on stage and did a song with Ricky. As for Def Leppard - setlist is known, I have to add that a small part of the Golden Earring song Radar Love was played during Rocket.

I had the big luck to rock in the very first row right in front of Joe´s microphone. I took some photos and hope that they will turn out good. I will let you know...please be patient. The stage isn't big and there is no place for a big stage set but it was allright. People in the frontrows had a good sound only the fans in the backrows and balcony told me about a bad sound. They were a bit disappointed. Well, I was disappointed about the very short encore, only two songs.

I wish that they had played longer and more songs but the band seemed tired - so we had to let them go. But all in all I think Def Leppard gave all they could give at this moment to us and for that WE LOVE THEM!.

Fan Review - By Daniel

Yes, I finally saw Def Leppard after so many years. I was really happy to have the chance to see them in Germany. I was also quite worried, was I going to be disappointed? how would Skid Row be as opening act? Would anyone actually turn up besides me?.

Well, my first worry came from the fact that Def Leppard were going to play in a venue that was located in some dodgy industrial area of outskirt Frankfurt instead of the Festival Hall which was literally in front of my hotel.

So I took a taxi, and after a twenty minute drive, arrived to find that the venue was actually quite nice. Small (2,500 - 3,000 capacity tops) but very well organised, clean and germanically efficient.

I arrived soon enough to catch the Ricky Warwick performance. His angry Steve Earle meets Elliott Murphy style went largely unnoticed by the crowd, who clapped politely but coldly to each song. Ricky's material is good, but suffers with such sparse arrangements.

Then came Skid Row. First humorous fact is that the band actually seems two different bands altogether. On one side, the drummer, rhythm guitarist and bass player look, act and pose as 70s punks out of The Ramones. The singer and lead guitarist, on the contrary, look exactly like what they are, hard rock classic styled metal men. "Welcome motherf**keeeeeeeers!!!!!", was the greeting cheer. The crowd of mostly thirtysomethings didn't seem too impressed.

Skid Row showed they have a decent catalog of melodic Crue/Halen rock hymns. But they seem too worried with ruining perfectly decent melodies with constant shrieks and yells. The singer is BAD, really bad as a scream king. They played five of their hits (biggest audience response to a power ballad, called I Remember You) and a new song "Thick Is The Skin", quite forgettable.

And then came Def Leppard. The venue was almost full. The crowd, practically all thirtysomething with a surprising number of younger fans (and some spanish ones with a flag!). The light show was excellent, nothing spectacular, but very well done with such limited resources. The sound was clear and pristine.

The band was on top form. Sav was the "rock God posing" master, frantically moving up and down the stage as if he was in his twenties. Phil and Viv worked the crowd very well too, moving up and down the stage, getting rid of their shirts and basically rocking the place out. Rick was excellent and received a standing ovation, twice. The harmonies and sound were overall all very good. And Joe did the rock frontman as only he can, using his wit and irony in the two short spoken intros. Mind you, he's a bit fat, but I don't care about image at all.

The show was excellent, showing why Def Leppard today are a great night out. Hit after hit, the audience get exactly what the look for, and the band leaves no prisoners. I am the first one to be there for a criticism, but in this case all I can say is that Def Leppard give the people what they want, and they give plenty. But they also give a very convincing and professional show, in which they really seem to enjoy every minute. Having seen many other classic acts that I am a fan of, this is a welcome surprise. Seeing Def Leppard play their hits for the umpteenth time as if it was 1983 is something I can only recall having seen in Maiden and Robert Plant.

They have an amazing catalog, it's really impressive how this band can fill a two hour show only with hits, and that will always guarantee a good turnout at the arenas. Joe said at the end his classic, Until the next time, ... and there will be a next time... I hope not with a six year gap.

Long live Def Leppard, the only 80s rock band that deserves doing better and being on top, really.


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