Bookended by Cats was named after Milo and Otis. They are the short, orange, and furry brothers who, upon entering our lives in 2003, often bookended us on our couch. And who are we? We're a geek couple living in PA. We love music, movies, TV, comics, books, and comic cons. And, from time to time, we'll share our thoughts on these nerdy things.

Friday, January 20, 2023

Friday 80s Flashback for January 20, 2023

[Gunter glieben glauchen globen] -- This week, my inner (glam) metalhead is coming to the fore. Def Leppard's third studio album, Pyromania, was released 40 years ago today, on January 20, 1983. I don't know much about their initial EP release -- The Def Leppard E.P. (1979) -- but their prior studio albums had already made something of an impact in rock and metal circles. But Pyromania was a phenomenon, at least that's how I remember its impact in high school, radio play, and MTV. The songs, and those five lads from Sheffield, were everywhere. 

Pyromania peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200, and featured four singles -- "Photograph," "Rock of Ages," "Foolin'," and "Too Late for Love." All but "Too Late for Love" reached the top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100, but even that song dominated airwaves and video views. Well, Def Leppard dominated charts and radio-play in the US, Canada, and the UK, but according to Wikipedia, Pyromania didn't sell all that well outside of those three countries. (Global success, however, would come with their next release, Hysteria.)

Now, not everyone was happy with Pyromania. Some fans, and critics, felt this outing -- the band's second go-round with super producer "Mutt" Lange -- was too slick and polished. I think their musicianship was getting tighter with each release, so Lange's production touches could seem to remove some of the band's grit, but that also might just be natural progress. But I wouldn't say Lange diminished their fire at all. In fact, I definitely agree with the Rolling Stone reviewer who praised the record for putting "much-needed fire back on the radio." But to each their own. 

These days, I cannot listen to many of the heavy metal records released during this early period of the 1980s, even records I initially liked. But Pyromania? I will turn that volume dial up every chance I get. 

FlashbackPyromania (January 20, 1983)

And that's all till next week. Dedicated 80s-philes can find more flashbacks in the Prophet or Madman archives or via Bookended's 80s Flashback tag. As always, your comments are welcome on today's, or any other, flashback post. And if you like what I'm doing here, please share the link with your friends. If, however, you don't like the flashback, feel free to share it with your enemies.

I'll see you in seven!

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