Review: Def Leppard – Hysteria and More, Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff

Going by the size of the queue to enter Cardiff’s Motorpoint Arena on Tuesday evening, there was a lot of excitement for Def Leppard’s Hysteria and more tour.

Cheap Trick Support Def Leppard

I arrived in time to see the support band, Cheap Trick and although I wasn’t aware of them previously, I was pleasantly surprised the quality of their sound.  I learned that the band had been around since 1973 and highlights of their set included the hit, I Want You to Want Me, I know and The Flame. In an interesting twist, they had a guest drummer from Flaming Lips join them for one number and his drumming was outstanding.

Def Leppard Perform Hysteria

As the stage was reset for Def Leppard, the excitement took precedent as announcements informed the audience how long we would have to wait for the band to take the stage.  As the countdown ended, we were thrown into darkness as the walk-through of the Hysteria album commenced.

From the opening to the end of the Hysteria album each song took on an individual performance and identity of its own.  The audience really enjoyed some of the bigger hits like Rocket and Animal but for me the highlights were when the set and song came together as in Gods of War where the band played as well as film footage video from different wars played on the projection screen in the background.  Another favourite was the track Animal with a larger than life neon graffiti background.

Each of the songs were accompanied by awesome light design.  Lighting effects were manipulated to full capacity to create different looks and designs on the stage and projected out from the band above the auditorium. For the lighting design my favourite was Love Bites which contained a multi coloured laser light show.

A Tribute To Steve Clark of Def Leppard

Approximately half way through the album the was a tribute to Def Leppard’s late principal songwriter and lead guitarist Steve Clark. It was lovely to see the archived footage of him in this section as well as during the song Hysteria which was accompanied by videos of the boys in concert back in the 1980s.

Ultimately Def Leppard projected the atmosphere of a celebration throughout the evening, closing the show with a favourites old and new including Let’s Get Rocked. Without a doubt, the hysteria was more than justified!

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