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Def Leppard Tour History Fan Archive.

Media Review - Journey tops Leppard in band battle By Michael Eck

Def Leppard was positively lethargic by contrast. Yes, they played expected hits like "Bringin on the Heartbreak," "Foolin" (evidently, final g's were against the rules in the '80s) and "Photograph," but even those had little spark -- and none were helped by a bass-heavy sound mix that lacked the clarity and punch of Journey's set.

Singer Joe Elliott and the crew did find a little more energy when they tackled covers from the band's new album, "Yeah."

But then, Def Leppard's versions of T. Rex's "20th Century Boy" and David Essex's "Rock On" don't improve in the originals (even if the former's Marc Bolan was Lep guitarist Vivian Campbell's prime influence).

If Saturday actually had been a prom or a battle of the bands, Journey would have won hands down.

Cain's pal Stoll Vaughan opened the evening with a brief set best described as Dylanesque, in a damning-with-faint-praise kind of way.

By Michael Eck @ Times Union 2006.


Media Review - Journey/Def Leppard really renews faith in rock concerts By Deanna Amore

The Journey/Def Leppard show at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center Saturday night renewed my faith in rock concerts.

Having seen both bands separately numerous times, I was a bit unsure of their touring combination, figuring there would be fans there for either one band or the other. But the crowd was behind each in full force.

After a short but pleasant set by Stoll Vaughan, who was celebrating the new CD release Love Like a Mule, Journey took to the stage.

It didn't take long to get the crowd on its feet as guitarist Neal Schon opened the set with his version of The Star-Spangled Banner. It was a fitting tribute just days after the fifth anniversary of Sept. 11.

From there, it was nonstop rock as the band tore through classic hits such as "Stone in Love," "Ask the Lonely," "Wheel in the Sky," "Keep on Runnin'," "Chain Reaction," "Lights," "Lovin', Touchin', Squeezin'," "Escape," "Don't Stop Believin'," and "Anyway You Want It." Singer Jeff Scott Soto, who is filling in for frontman Steve Augeri (he had a nasty throat infection that sidelined him earlier in the tour), was a ball of energy, engaging the crowd on every song.

Even when he stepped aside and handed off vocals to drummer Deen Castronovo, the momentum continued. Castronovo lead the infectious sing-alongs of "Who's Crying Now" and the power ballads "Open Arms" and "Faithfully." (Jonathan Cain provided perfect lead-ins on the piano.) The band rounded out their 80-minute set with "Separate Ways," leaving the crowd yearning for more hard-rocking hits.

And that came when Def Leppard singer Joe Elliott asked the crowd, Do you wanna get rocked? Again on their feet, the fans clapped and sang along as Def Leppard jammed through such hits as "Let's Get Rocked," "Let it Go," "Women," "Bringin' on the Heartbreak," "Foolin'," and "Hysteria."

Elliott then took a moment to talk about the band's latest CD, "Yeah," which features remakes of their influences from the 1960s and '70s. Saturday, they performed T-Rex's "20th Century Boy" and David Essex's "Rock On." Even though they weren't Def Leppard songs, so to speak, the crowd loved it.

From there, it was back to the classic hits as the band rocked through the rest of their 90-minute set with "Rocket," "Photograph," "Armageddon It," "Animal" and "Rock of Ages" before wrapping up with an encore of "Love Bites" and the wildly popular "Pour Some Sugar on Me."

Elliott, famed one-arm drummer Rick Allen, bassist Rick Savage and guitarists Vivian Campbell and Phil Collen poured their heart and soul into every song, taking in the energy from the crowd and expelling it back out through blaring instruments and hard-driving vocals.

Saturday's show had all the makings of the great rock concerts of the past - high-energy bands, nonstop hits, fans on their feet, singing along, clapping and waving their arms and even a few beach balls being tossed around for good measure.

It was all about the music and having a good time. This is what concerts are supposed to be like.

So to Journey, Def Leppard and the 19,000 fans at SPAC, I say, thank you.

By Deanna Amore @ The Saratogian 2006.