Adrenalize

Def Leppard

Adrenalize is a decent follow up to the tour de force that is Hysteria. It's clear that Def Leppard loses part of its sound with the death of Steve Clark, and it shows in some of the tracks that Clark didn't contribute to on Adrenalize.

Adrenalize: Def Leppard’s first album without Steve Clark. Just a shame.

Rating

I give Adrenalize an 810.

It’s a bit of a dip from their last two albums, Pyromania and Hysteria, but how could you legitimately compare anything to them? Pyromania was totally bad ass, and Hysteria is one of the most legendary albums ever released.

Make no mistake, Vivian Campbell has the all the skill in the world. It’s just that Steve Clark was … well, Steve Clark.

Along with Appetite for Destruction, Hysteria released 7 singles. Just incredible.

Track Listing

  1. Let’s Get Rocked (notes)
  2. Heaven Is
  3. Make Love Like A Man
  4. Tonight
  5. White Lightning
  6. Stand Up (Kick Love Into Motion)
  7. Personal Property
  8. Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad
  9. I Wanna Touch U
  10. Tear It Down

Adrenalize notes

Let’s Get Rocked

Great way to start an album. Musically solid, Let’s Get Rocked is one big euphemism lyrically. At least it’s classier than every track on Danger Danger’s Screw It. Def Leppard was a bit more keen to good marketing than some of their comrades (cold war pun).

Heaven Is

Def Leppard owns the pre-chorus better than any band in the history of time, and that’s the best part of this mostly forgettable tune. The solo harkens back to Hysteria’s Animal and Hysteria.

Make Love Like A Man

Three tracks in and we drop innuendo and euphemisms for getting to the point. Let’s call it what it is, another song about getting chicks over to your house. Fun guitar riffs though. Interesting little rap part around 2:40 or so.

Tonight

OLD SCHOOL. Tonight gives Adrenalize a much needed boost in street cred with Pyromania/High ‘n’ Dry feel musically.

White Lightning

Following Tonight, White Lightning is a pretty complete tune and a bit of a change of pace for Def Leppard on Adrenalize as it’s not a compact and formulaic attempt at writing a hit.

Stand Up (Kick Love Into Motion)

The chorus pedal’d clean guitars are staples of the Def Leppard sound, almost as much as the heavy synth drums and the “Def Leppard Chorus”. Decent tune. Fluttery guitar solo from Collen’s magic fingers. Elliot name drops Stairway To Heaven. Bold choice.

“You couldn’t get it much better” … signature Def Leppard sound over that part.

Personal Property

Even Def Leppard isn’t immune to claiming ownership over women. A decent tune that might be a hit for a Saigon Kick or Bang Tango, but not the Joe, Rick, and The Sideways Mob.

Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad

A rare, 8th track lost-in-love/heartache song. It’s got a surprisingly bitchin’ breakdown … “damned if I don’t, damned if I do”.

Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad is more like Have You Ever Needed A Song So Bad … and that song is Bringing on the Heartbreak. Def Leppard wrote “sadness” better in 1981.

I Wanna Touch U

Lovable fluff. Like Personal Property, I Wanna Touch U would be a hit for other bands, but never ascends to Def Leppard’s lofty standard. Key change to keep it interesting though. I do so love me a key change.

Tear It Down

A powerhouse of a song. It was the very last tune that Steve Clark played live with Def Leppard, appearing on the MTV music awards in 1989.

This song has it all, huge riff, impactful solo, a bad ass “Def Leppard chorus”, and tons of energy. I always envisioned this song was the epicenter of what it meant to be Def Leppard - the bridge between all the songs written prior and all those that followed. Tear It Down represents the changing of the guard from Steve Steamin’ Clark to Vivian Campbell (an amazing guitar player in his own right).

Tear It Down definitely sits on the Fizz Top 50 best Hair Metal songs chart.