Review Summary: One of the best rock albums of the 1980's
Def Leppard's Hysteria is probably the best rock album ever. And there is a reason for that; each and every one of the songs is a possible hit (maybe with the exception of Excitable) and the production could not be better. Six of the seven released songs were chart bending hits.
The songs hit home on the first listen and that is the point. The album opens with the moody classic 'Women' and then launches into the loud and bombastic, yet equally melodic, 'Rocket'. 'Animal' with its gloriously singalong chorus is followed by an incredibly touching and emotional ballad: 'Love Bites'. Def Leppard have never, and probably never will, write a ballad as timeless and mournful as 'Love Bites'.
Probably the biggest highlight of the album is the perfectly executed 'Pour Some Sugar On Me' which became an MTV favourite. The anthemic 'Pour Some Sugar On Me' is as loud and tongue-in-cheek as it gets. The lyrics are humorous and are delivered in an unparalled style by Joe Elliott ("You got the peaches, I got the cream" or "Do you take sugar? One lump or two?"). The loud drums, the throaty vocals on the verse and the musical interlude with its guitar solo all drip of pure sexiness.
The effervescent 'Armageddon It' never loses its sparkle. Neither does the energised 'Don't Shoot Shotgun'.' Run Riot' is just about the fastest rocker on the album and reminds us that Def Leppard are a metal band.
'Gods of War' is more a piece of music than a hit single. Although just as melodic and tuneful as anything else on the album, it really is a different kind of animal in comparison with the rest of the songs. The chorus is an absolute storm of vocal harmonies which could shake the very foundations of your house if played too loud! The title track is definately one of my favourites here. It's windswept verse and slightly anxious chorus make it incredibly compelling.
Overall, the album doesn't let the listener go for one minute. It certainly is a must have in any rock collection because the longer you wait before acquiring this album, the more time you are spending missing out the the great music that makes Hysteria.