Review DEF LEPPARD ‘Drastic Symphonies’

Rock Meets Classic and Metal Meets Classic, that’s always one of those things that include a certain risk. Sometimes it works, but often the opposite is the case. Now, Def Leppard give it a try and release ‘Drastic Symphonies’, an album which contains reworked versions of some of their big hits.

In collaboration with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Joe Elliot and band mates have recorded an album that is one of the positive references for combining classic and rock. This is mainly due to the fact that the tracks are completely rearranged and represent a balanced mix between classic and rock.

Thereby Def Leppard go back to the early days. ‘Bringing on the Heartbeat’ and the following instrumental ‘Switch 625’, both from the ‘High ‘n’ Dry’ album, have lost nothing of their original power and sound excellent in a classical setting. Musical worlds unite instead of them fighting against each other. On ‘Switch 625’ it’s a Flash Gordon-like cinematic vibe that makes the song a real highlight.

A larger percentage of songs on this release come from the mega-selling album ‘Hysteria’. With ‘Animal’, ‘Pour Some Sugar on Me’, ‘Hysteria’, Gods of War’ and ‘Love Bites’ five of the most commercial songs made it onto this album. The orchestra gives these hits extra depth and density which makes these great songs even better. It is especially noticeable with the stripped down version of ‘Pour Some Sugar on Me’. Often shouted down as commercial anthems, these versions show the potential of those timeless rock classics.

With ‘Paper Sun’ the guys also have a bombastic sounding song from the ‘Euphoria’ album on this release while the balladic ‘Angels (Can’t Help You Now)’ from the latest studio album exemplifies Def Leppard’s more recent history.

With ‘Drastic Symphonies’, one can speak of a successful effort. Def Leppard have intertwined the audio from the original tapes and performed them together with the orchestra. Combined with new vocals and guitars the result is a breathtaking album which is not only a must for fans of the band. It’s fun to listen to these songs and even if a lot is known, there is also a lot of new stuff.

Rating: 0 out of 10.

no score


  1. Turn to Dust
  2. Paper Sun
  3. Animal
  4. Pour Some Sugar on Me (Stripped version)
  5. Hysteria
  6. Love Bites
  7. Goodbye For Good This Time
  8. Love
  9. Gods Of War
  10. Angels (Can’t Help You Now)
  11. Bringin’ On the Heartbreak
  12. Switch 625
  13. Too Late for Love
  14. When Love & Hate Collide
  15. Kings Of the World

Label: Universal Music

Genre: Rock

Release Date EU: may 19th, 2023




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