Def Leppard – Slang (reissue)

Def Leppard Slang reissue
Review: Simon Hastelow

Many bands who reissue an old album are usually trying to fill a gap in their recording calendar to keep the record company happy. There have been many over the years that deliver nothing extra and are bought only by the fanboys.

With the reissue of 1996’s Slang you get the feeling that Def Leppard are doing more than just cashing in. At the time of its original release it is fair to say that reaction was ‘muted’ at best. Despite earning several glowing reviews the sales came nowhere near to the absolute barnstorming Hysteria from 1987 or Adrenalize from 1992.

I was lucky enough to see them live when Rick Allen still held two drumsticks and also their monumental ‘we’re back!’ performance at the Monsters of Rock festival in 1986 that came close to eclipsing the Scorpions who had to follow them on stage.

If you gave this CD to a noob today and didn’t tell them who it was I think they’d be impressed, it doesn’t feel dated, it certainly isn’t just a UK version of old Bon Jovi recording. The boys from Sheffield seem to be saying “Look, this was a bloody good album!” and are asking us to look at it again. Comparing it to the stadium rock friendly tracks of the previous albums you can see that it is seriously out of step. There’s no way you could have All I want is Everything in the same set as Rock of Ages and tracks like Breath a Sigh are far more mature than Pour some Sugar on Me.

If you get the deluxe 2CD version you’re getting 30 tracks of top quality Rock n Roll that you could easily play in the car after picking your mum up from church but also rock out to over a few beers with your mates.

Some of the ‘demo’ and ‘rough mix’ versions are really only there to provide historical perspective. But the five previously unreleased tracks coupled with the 26 page booklet really give you an insight into where the band was coming from in the mid 90s. They conquered the world, faced extinction then came back and did it again. Slang shows a band that has more depth than we probably gave them credit for at the time.

SLANG was released on 10th February 2014

2CD deluxe format:
DISC 1
Truth?
Turn to Dust
Slang
All I Want is Everything
Work it Out
Breathe A Sigh
Deliver Me
Gift of Flesh
Blood Runs Cold
Where Does Love Go When It Dies
Pearl of Euphoria
Move With Me Slowly
Truth? (Original Version)
Burn Out
Worlds Collide
Can’t Keep Away From The Flame

DISC 2
Turn to Dust (Phil Verse Vocal)
Raise Your Love
All I Want is Everything (1st Draft)
Work it Out (1st Draft)
Breathe A Sigh (Rough Mix)
Deliver Me (Rough Mix)
Black Train
Blood Runs Cold (Rough Mix)
Where Does Love Go When It Dies (1st Draft)
Pearl of Euphoria (Rough Mix)
All On Your Touch (2012 revisit)
Anger (Deliver Me – 1st Draft)
Move On Up (Viv Demo)
Gift of Flesh (Phil Vocal)

2LP Vinyl

SIDE 1
Truth?
Turn to Dust
Slang
All I Want is Everything
Work it Out

SIDE 2
Breathe A Sigh
Deliver Me
Gift of Flesh
Blood Runs Cold
Where Does Love Go When It Dies

SIDE 3
Pearl of Euphoria
Move With Me Slowly
Truth? (Original Version)

SIDE 4
Burn Out
Worlds Collide
Can’t Keep Away From The Flame
All On Your Touch (2012 revisit)
Black Train

iTunes Exclusives:
Truth? (Demo)
Work it Out (Demo)
All I Want is Everything (Demo)
Move With Me Slowly (Phil Chorus Vocal)
When Saturday Comes (From the Film “When Saturday Comes”)
Jimmy’s Theme (From the Film “When Saturday Comes”)
Cause We Ended As Lovers (From the Jeff Beck Tribute Album “Jeffology”)
Led Boots (From the Jeff Beck Tribute Album “Jeffology”)

http://www.defleppard.com/

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