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Def Leppard – ‘Diamond Star Halos’

Bludgeon Riffola/Mercury Records
Bon Jovi, Night Ranger, Tesla, Great White, David Lee Roth, Thunder
Release Date
May 27, 2022
Bludgeon Riffola/Mercury Records
Hard Rock/Pop Rock

                Def Leppard have reached a point in their career where they can do whatever the hell they want to do, the Sheffield lads have grown from NWOBHM urchins into transatlantic megastars and into elder statesmen of rock. It may have been some years since Def Leppard released their self-titled 2015 album, but now, Leppard are back with their long-awaited album ‘Diamond Star Halos’.

                By now, we know what to expect from Def Leppard, they have a very unique sound and although many have tried, no one else can quite hit that Leppard stride. A couple of years ago, Leppard celebrated the 30th anniversary of ‘Hysteria’ embarking on a worldwide tour playing the album in full and a lot of that has rubbed off into ‘Diamond Star Halos’. This album has Def Leppard sounding fired up and through a pristine, high-quality polished production tracks such as ‘Kick’, ‘Fire It Up’ and ‘Unbreakable’ are rocking anthems whilst ‘U Rok Mi’, ‘Gimme a Kiss’ and ‘Take What You Want’ are classic Leppard. However, there are a lot of familiar sounding parts here, ‘Liquid Dust’ has an aura of ‘Love and Affection’ about it whilst ‘Fire It Up’ follows the ‘Pour Some Sugar On Me’ template. Yet, the country rock vibes which run throughout is all very middle of the road contemporary rock and as talented as Alison Krauss is, it just dulls up what could have been a superb album with some tracks ‘This Guitar’ and ‘Lifeless’ sounding like modern era Bon Jovi and the world just doesn’t need that, especially when evidenced on this album Def Leppard can do so much more.

                At 15 tracks and just over an hour, ‘Diamond Star Halos’ gets to be a bit of slog. Def Leppard could have made a fantastic album here of rocking songs, but instead deliver a watered-down album of country rock musings and by the numbers songs that make this album sadly, little better than average.

"Def Leppard could have made a fantastic album of rocking songs, but instead deliver a watered-down album of country rock musings"

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