Def Leppard setting off 'Hysteria' with Las Vegas run
Posted November 12, 2012
Def Leppard will play its multiplatinum 1987 album
in its entirety for
, which will begin March 22 at The Joint at Las Vegas' Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. The band's stay follows Hard Rock residencies from Motley Crue and Guns N' Roses.
"We're very happy to be part of what I call the first wave of rockers to take Vegas back from the lounge singers — Wayne Newton and his type," says Def Leppard frontman Joe Elliott.
The nine-show residency, the start of which coincides with the first weekend of NCAA basketball's March Madness, also will feature encores highlighting other material from the group's 35-year career.
Hysteria, which includes hits Pour Some Sugar on Me, Animal and Love Bites, has sold more than 12 million copies in the USA and more than 20 million worldwide. The shows will mark the first time the band has played one of its albums live from start to finish.
"In Las Vegas, you have to give poeple something they can't see anywhere else," says Bobby Reynolds, vice president of booking at AEG Live.
Hysteria yielded seven singles in the USA, and the band has cherry-picked the album's material for its live shows for years. Set lists for the group's 2012 North American tour, for example, typically included eight of the album's 12 songs. Some tracks inevitably were omitted in favor of other areas of the group's catalog.
"Things like Run Riot, Don't Shoot Shotgun and Love and Affection got left by the wayside because of the popularity of other songs that, to be frank, if you don't play them live, you don't get out of the building alive," Elliott says. "The oddest thing is going to be doing Sugar fifth. In many respects, it's like the Troggs opening with Wild Thing."
Tickets go on sale Friday and start at $49.50, with floor seats going for $125. The Joint seats 2,950. "It's small, it's intimate, but it's not tiny like CBGB's, so we can still put on a good show," Elliott says. "The furthest seat from us is 155 feet."
The Hard Rock recently found itself in the middle of controversy over Guns N' Roses' current residency, when ads and posters featured a disheveled woman who appeared to be the victim of an assault. A county commissioner and a local women's shelter criticized the ads for glorifying sexual violence against women.
Reynolds says the controversy won't affect the Def Leppard shows or their promotion. "The Def Leppard artwork was approved weeks before the controversy with the GNR artwork ever came up," he says. "So while the Def Leppard artwork is certainly not controversial, just by virtue of a timeline the controversy had no bearing on that."
Elliott says the band plans to use its days off between shows to write material for its next album.
"The downtime will not go to waste," he says. "Two of the guys in the band live in Dublin and the other three live in California. This is a great opportunity for a band that has decided to live all over the world to be in one room at one time, to look each other in the eyes and to come up with ideas."
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