Why Def Leppard Opted For Hysteria During Pyromania's Anniversary
Morley Seaver for antiMusic: Considering that it's also the 30th anniversary of Pyromania, why the decision to visit Hysteria front to back?
Phil: Well, it was our biggest album, without a doubt. Pyromania ended up doing 10x platinum. I think Hysteria is at 20x platinum so you know it was just a bigger deal. It had more of an effect. It crossed over into pop music and it was a more pop-sounding record as well. The thing with Pyromania was that we were still very much in the rock genre and with Hysteria, we crossed over to a bigger audience.
antiMusic: I'm sure you entered the studio kind of apprehensive since Pyromania was such a world-wide breakout. At what point did the band kind of look at yourselves and breathe a sigh of relief because you knew you were confident that you could follow it up in such a big way?
Phil: Honestly, I do think the thing about being an artist is that you want to push the boundaries a bit. After Pyromania, we wanted a different sounding record. We actually hadn't achieved the sound. It had a sound, obviously, but we knew there was still a bit further we could go with it. And I think that's what Hysteria was. That's why it was such an important record for us. It did cross over and it was a big world-wide hit and it didn't stay genre-specific. It moved in other areas. It had other influences and other stuff like that. We weren't scared to show an influence if it was waaayyy off what we would usually do.
I think that's what happens with a lot of genres, people get close-minded about something. With Hysteria, at the time everyone was listening to Prince, rap music I mean Run DMC was popular at the time and we were definitely listening to some of that stuff. Frankie Goes to Hollywood and all of those kind of sounds. I mean, it wasn't just like it was the usual Sabbath and Hendrix and every kind of heavy thing out there. And I think in the end you could tell that there were a lot of other influences that went into it. Read the full interview here.