Currently on tour with Tesla and Styx, rock giants Def Leppard are gearing up to release their 11th studio album in October. In a recent interview with the Grand Forks Herald, singer Joe Elliott explains, “It’s just called ‘Def Leppard’ because that’s what it sounds like. It doesn’t sounds like any one specific era of Def Leppard. It’s got everything.”
In discussing the band’s past, Elliott’s perspective is grounded and realistic. Having been together for 35 years, Def Leppard hasn’t followed the cliché path of rock bands that break up and end up hating each other, in spite of massive success.
“We’re lucky that’s never happened to us. It will take a nature [sic] ending when it does, but right now, we’re loving be [sic] out on the road. We’re loving this new record that’s about to come out. So the future is whatever it is. I cannot really predict it, but I’m not staring at some ugliness in the face, and we never really have,” says Elliott.
He does admit that things got “manky” when drummer Rick Allen lost his arm, and after the accidental, fatal overdose of guitarist Steve Clark. “I mean, shoot, we all just went ‘What’s the point for about five seconds?’ But then we said we were all musicians and we all enjoyed each other’s company and we like what we do. You wouldn’t quit being a plumber, why would you quit being a musician?”
Aware of his band’s good fortune, Elliott is proud of the new record.
“You just have to wait for the stars to be aligned. For this new album, they seemed to have been for us, because we all played and sang great and wrote well. There’s some great variety on there. Every single aspect of anything we’ve ever wanted to put out — acoustic, heavy, soft, slow, fast — it’s there. That’s why we call it “Def Leppard” because, just like Queen were, we’re capable of coming up with vastly different kinds of songs.”
Catch the band on its US tour now through October 17th.