Def Leppard Prep Career-Spanning Box Set Series - Rolling Stone
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Def Leppard Prep Career-Spanning Box Set Series

First of four volumes will include band’s Eighties LPs, along with rare B-sides, live cuts

Rick Savage, Joe Elliott, Rick Allen, Steve Clark, Phil Collen of Def Leppard in Italy, 1988.Rick Savage, Joe Elliott, Rick Allen, Steve Clark, Phil Collen of Def Leppard in Italy, 1988.

Def Leppard will compile their first four LPs, along with rare B-sides and live cuts, for the first installment of a career-spanning box set series.

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Def Leppard will compile their studio catalog, rare B-sides and live cuts in a new career-spanning box set series. The first of four installments, the Eighties-centric Volume One, is out June 1st via Bludgeon Riffola/Mercury/UMe.

Volume One is dedicated to the British hard rock band’s first four studio albums – 1980’s On Through the Night, 1981’s High ‘n’ Dry, 1983’s Pyromania and 1987’s Hysteria – on both eight-LP and seven-CD sets. The bonus material includes early recordings, B-sides and the concert album Live at the LA Forum 1983, previously issued as a bonus disc in the deluxe CD edition of Pyromania.

Singer Joe Elliott curated the collection, which comes in a newly commissioned sleeve. The sets, housed with a hardback book containing rare photos, also include Def Leppard’s self-titled 1979 EP on a replica seven-inch single and three-inch CD, respectively. Elliott, bassist Rick Savage, drummer Rick Allen and guitarist Phil Collen each contributed a written introduction to Volume One. The full track list and pre-order information is available at Amazon.

This early period documents Def Leppard’s ascent from hard rock to radio-friendly hair metal – an evolution that culminated with their two most popular LPs, the diamond-selling, “Mutt” Lange-produced Pyromania and Hysteria

In a statement about the project, Elliott reflected on the band’s unique blend of heaviness and hooks during their stadium-packing Eighties period. “The way we did our harmonies was based on the multi-tracking abilities of a band like Queen, but we took what they did to the next level,” he said. “Queen maybe tripled or quadrupled their backing vocals — but we did it like 20 times! We wanted it to sound like the quality of Queen but have the size of Slade. The way we did it gave us a unique sound. And that’s the whole point of an album, really — capturing a band’s unique dynamics.”

Def Leppard, which released a 30th anniversary box set of Hysteria last year, will kick off a massive joint tour with Journey on May 21st. 

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