REVIEW: Definitely: The Official Story of Def Leppard

REVIEW: Definitely: The Official Story of Def Leppard

I remember there being some sort of love / hate relationship with Def Leppard and the music press back in the late 80’s / early 90’s this was when the likes of Guns ‘n’ Roses, Metallica and ACDC seemingly could do no wrong. Maybe it was jealousy that formed due to a UK band doing so well overseas in the Big Apple, whatever it was and or where it steamed from Def Leppard have seen out all of their critics whilst still banging out the hits to their ever-increasing adoring crowd.

These sentiments are uttered by Queen guitarist Brian May via his introduction to the band in their first official anthology, 62,000-word strong, released via masters of hardback broadcasting Genesis Publications, May reveals he has had an affinity with the band since the 80’s, Def Leppard mesmerized him with their quick wit and music, this relationship has stayed robust to one another.

Featuring new interviews with all current band members; Joe Elliot, Rick Savage, Rick Allen, Phil Collen and Vivian Campbell along with archive recollections from early guitarist Pete Willis and the sadly missed Steve Clark, the book is an exhaustive and gratifying look back to the bands innocent early days, glamorous bestselling days to their current world domination. Elliot opens his account revealing early gigs he attended included T Rex and The Faces, giving clues to the reasons for the obsession with hair sprayed long hair and sparkles that have adorned the bands look since they formed.

As many great frontmen have confessed approaching school careers advisors with wishes of becoming a footballer or a rock star instead of a surgeon or teacher always and will forever be met with derision, however the likes of Elliot thankfully make those dreams a reality. Early shots of the band and individual band members show them dressed as their heroes, long Robert Plant type curly shoulder length hair, straight Levi jeans with echoes of a love for The Faces ringing through the band members, going from playing their first gig at Westfield School, Mosborough end of term party to playing Wembley Stadium to sharing a stage with Taylor Swift, the band have done it all.

There are enduring shots of the band jumping about on stages, set lists, band tour memorabilia, leather trousers a plenty, newspaper clippings, extensive lowdowns on their long players including when the band gave up their jobs for a life of music, this included making the conscious decision whilst punk bands would try to look as angry as possible in their promo shots Def Leppard were purposely trying to do the opposite with their eye opening own style. This is also evident in the many personal shots strewn throughout the book. On the road, in private and on a beach, the band were living their best dreams.

As with all the great bands there are plenty of tales of debauchery, hijinks and band members leaving and new ones introduced. There’s extensive notes explaining the reasons for Pete Willis departure through alcohol, the sad tale of Steve Clarkes fall from being the blonde haired guitar hero to his sad and tragic passing from over doing the rock n roll life style, whilst Rick Allen’s shocking accident where he lost one of his arms gets coverage with his brave and courageous decision to carry on doing what he loved, drumming.

Running right up to the present day where the band are still packing out stadiums and arenas the world over, sitting next to the likes of KISS, these Sheffield heartthrobs certainly don’t look to be downing tools anytime soon. A must read for any fan, limited edition versions come with exclusive inserts, get yours whilst you can.

Definitely: The Official Story of Def Leppard can be purchased via the following link

Matt Mead

Matt Mead

Freelance writer who likes anything with heart and soul