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Saturday, 24th May 2008

Trondheim, Norway - Fan Reviews

Fan Review - Def Leppard: Nostalgic reunion under open sky, part 2 By Raymond Abeltun

During the concert at Trondheim Torg, there is a couple of things that really makes me think; Its over twenty years since the bands commercial peak. 2. It's more than fifteen years since grunge supposedly killed of bands like Def Leppard. 3. It's over twelve years since the band visited our shores, and still they manage two hold three shows and play for well above fiftheen thousand people. Conclusion: Quality never goes out of fashion.

When "For Those About Too Rock (We Salute You)" screams thru the PA system the writer immediately understood that it was time for Def Leppard, unfortunately he was stuck in the toilet queue. Trondheim Rockfest had said in the newspapers that the errors from last years Ozzy Osbourne concert wouldn't be repeated. Last year there were too few places to buy beverages. That was no problem this year. Unfortunately they had forgotten that what goes in, must go out. Five toilets are what this writer saw, and that is way too few when there are fifteen thousand five hundred people gathered. Problem was solved the same way as many other solved it. Taking a leak against the fences with approximately fifteen thousan five hundred spectators watching you.

Joe Elliott started it all.

I just reached my targeted place to hear the end of "For Those About Too Rock (We Salute You)" and when Joe Elliott came strutting in with his mike and screamed: "Guitars! Drums!" the start of Rocket was upon us. And one and a half hour of feelgood rock & Roll lay ahead.

After Rocket came Animal, and as predicted the song got a big welcome. Then came C'mon C'mon, which is the bands next single, this song was surprisingly well received. Maybe not that strange when the chorus goes like this: "c'mon c'mon c'mon c'mon c'mon, everybody everywhere, c'mon c'mon c'mon c'mon". In well known Def Leppard style its easy and catchy. The time was then rewinded back to 1981 and "Mirror Mirror (Look Into My Eyes)" from High and Dry. Since "Bringing On The Heartbreak" and "Switch 365" was dropped since the US leg, "Mirror Mirror" was a delightful reunion with the bands New Wave Of British Heavy Metal roots.

Then came "Foolin", which gave us further indication that vocalist Joe Elliott had a really good day at the job. After suffering with throat infection thru large parts of the US leg it was clear that a much-needed break back in Dublin had done miracles to his voice. "Nine Lives", the bands first single from Songs From The Sparkle Lounge, came next. This song was quickly forgotten, not because it was bad, but simply because the probably best ballad of the eighties was next. "Love Bites" was as usual absolutely brilliant. Vocalist Elliott once again showed us that his voice was absolutely brilliant this evening. At the same time we also got it confirmed, but really didn't need to, that Vivian Campbell (ex-Sweet Savage, Dio, Whitesnake and Shadow King) and Phil Collen (ex-Girl) is one of the rock worlds best guitar duos. Campbell's solo during this song at least gave this writer chills running down his back.

Rick Savage revived thlostst art of bassolo.

When the lighters and mobile phones were turned down again it was time for a lost art form. The long lost bassolo. In came Rick Savage and played his minute long bass solo. Then Rock On, the bands latest US hit took over. "Bad Actress" was next, not that there was any low points of this concert, but "Bad Actress" was the closest we got.

Even thou both "Bad Actress", "Nine Lives" and "C'mon C'mon" are solid rock songs, chances are that they will never be the main reason for you, me and everybody else going too see a Def Leppard concert. The band has a huge backcatalog that many bands can be jealous of, and the band knows how too treat it. The bands show ended with a long line of hits. First out was "Make Love Like A Man", even though it was released in 92 it is most likely the ultimate 80s song? That means meaningless sexist lyrics, medium angry guitars and showcasing of vocal abilities. After "Make Love Like A Man" it was time for the obligatory guitar solo. Phil Collen played as fast as he could and the crowd roared. The guitar solo quickly went over in "Hysteria", and many were clearly happy with that. "Armageddon It" was next, and it was now time for Joe Elliott to put aside any doubt regarding his voice. After receiving criticism thru the entire US leg he showed that he can still rock with the best of them. For those of you who have seen Def Leppards live DVD In The Round In Your Face, it must have felt like a flashback to 1988.

When the intro riff to "Photograph" started it was clear that it was not only yours truly who had this song as his favourite. Again Elliott showed his vocal capabilities. When the Marilyn Monroe tribute was over, it was time for what most likely is Def Leppards most famous song; "Pour Some Sugar On Me". Much has been sad about this son, but one thing remains undisputed. It's catchy as hell and if you're not on your feet and shouting "Pour some sugar on me, in the name of love" during the chorus, well then your heart is most likely a lump of iron.


"Pour Some Sugar On Me" was quickly followed by "Gunter, Glieben, Glauchen, Globen" which is legendary producer "Mutt" Lange's intro for "Rock Of Ages". When x numbers of "I love rock and roll" was sung back by the audience the band disappeared behind the curtains again. I was very excited what songs they were going to pull out for the encore. Would we get to hear "When Love & Hate Collide", "Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad", "Two Steps Behind", "Women", "Gods Of War", or maybe they had dusted of "Die Hard The Hunter" for the first time since 1993? I crossed my fingers for one or more of these songs. But when Joe Elliott entered the stage with the following words: "I got one question for ya", and then I remembered that I had forgotten the bands biggest single in Norway. "Do you wanna get rocked" roamed across Trondheim Torg and thereby was "Lets Get Rocked" started. The perfect partysong ending. Because after this show the message was "Don't Forget Us, And We Wont Forget You" and that always means that Def Leppard is over.

It was then time too head for the exit. Accompanied by Maximus Stumpus, the bands tourmanager Malvin Mortimer, Greek hitsingel Release Me. Even with the sound of a squealing pig I made the following summarize: The band sounded and looked much better than anticipated. There were many songs that the band could have played, which remind you of the huge backcatalog of the band. Elliott's voice was absolutely brilliant. The weather was actually too good, how often do you complain about that? The good weather meant that the band didn't get good use of the huge light rig the had. Phil Collen's chest was pretty impressive for a guy who is 50years. Rick Allen and Rick Savage must be one of the rockworlds most competent rhytmsections, despite Allen only having one arm. And finally, this Norwegian tour is the first time in twelve years that the band visits the country.

In other words, Def Leppard arrived late, but delivered the goods. Just as this review.


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