DEF LEPPARD Guitarist Phil Collen On VIVA! Hysteria Movie - "It Really Is How I Imagined The Show Would Look Like To Fans"

September 25, 2013, 4 years ago

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DEF LEPPARD guitarist Phil Collen is featured in a new interview with Jeb Wright at Classic Rock Revisited to discuss the VIVA! Hysteria movie. An excerpt is available below:

Jeb: The last time we talked you were preparing for the Vegas run and now it is coming out as a movie. Set the music aside for a second, the video quality of this thing is awesome.

Phil: "It’s outrageous and it is amazing. It is HD and all of that stuff. We actually saw it on a movie screen and it was really amazing. It’s great. This is going to sound weird, because I am always on stage playing, but this looks as good as I would imagine it to look. It is like coffee. You smell the fresh ground coffee and it smells so good, but it never tastes quite as good as it smells. With this, however, it tastes as good as it smells. We are very happy with this.

I am looking out so I can never really see what it looks like. It really is how I imagined it would look like to fans. It sounds odd, but that really is what my impression was when I first saw it."

Jeb: Hysteria had a lot of layering; it must be hard to play live.

Phil: "We worked the arrangements out and you have to give credit to our sound guy, Ronan McHugh, because he has been doing this for something like sixteen years…he does our albums and he does our lives shows. He knows what everyone should sound like and he did a wonderful job of mixing this. It sounds perfect and not abrasive. A lot of rock guys mix stuff and it sounds harsh.

I’ve been using the same amplifier for about fifteen years for live shows, a Marshall. Some of the guitars are the same ones. I actually used some of the guitars on this that I used in the 80s. I am using this thing that is a Fractal Axe-Fx guitar processor. Everything processes through that and it does make it a little clearer. That is the only thing I did differently on my part. All of this stuff, these patches and stuff, is updated all of the time and Ronan McHugh did a great job getting it all done right. It was down to the fact that Ronan is fucking great."

Click here for the complete interview.

See VIVA! Hysteria at your local cinema this fall. Find a screening here at

Shot live at Cineworld in London, England on September 12th this is a recap of the VIP premier event for Def Leppard’s VIVA! Hysteria, including fan reactions from the screening.

With 100 million records sold worldwide, Def Leppard continues to be one of the most potent forces in global rock. For the past 30 years the band has been a top box-office draw, consistently selling out arenas worldwide. October 18th, 2013 sees them issue in Europe (October 21st in UK and October 22nd in North America) an exciting new live release, VIVA! Hysteria, across multiple formats through Frontiers Records.

Originally released on August 3rd, 1987, the Hysteria album took the already well established Def Leppard and catapulted the band into the stratosphere. The statistics are astounding: the album has sold in excess of 25 million copies and counting. Due to the incredible success of previous album Pyromania (released in 1983) and Hysteria, Def Leppard are one of only five groups who can claim two separate original 10 million plus selling albums in the US. The others are THE BEATLES, LED ZEPPELIN, PINK FLOYD and VAN HALEN.

The Hysteria album also spawned seven hit singles! Enormous hits such as 'Pour Some Sugar On Me', 'Animal', 'Love Bites', 'Armageddon It' and 'Rocket' are hugely influential rock staples that still enjoy huge popularity today and have helped make Def Leppard Britain’s greatest ever arena rock band.

Produced by Robert John "Mutt" Lange, the album reached #1 on Billboard’s Top 200 chart in the US and also #1 on the UK Album chart.

For the first time ever, Def Leppard played Hysteria in its entirety during an eleven-show residency which started on March 22nd, 2013 at The Joint in the Hard Rock Hotel And Casino in Las Vegas. The band played also under the fictitious name of DED FLATBIRD (which came about after someone once mispronounced Def Leppard as "Dead Flat Bird"). Two different opening sets of 35 mins. on each of the nights. The band showcased some fan favourites and very rare songs from the early years of the band besides playing a selection of their greatest hits, highlighting classic material from throughout their career. The VIVA! Hysteria show featured an elaborate set design created uniquely for the Las Vegas residency.

“We’ve been asked for many years if we’d ever play an album in its entirety, and the answer was always no because we'd be out promoting a new album,” says lead vocalist Joe Elliott. “Then in March and April 2013 when we had no new music to promote, we had a chance to revisit arguably our most important album. It was an easy decision to make. As for Vegas, it's no longer perceived as the place crooners go to die! Artists like MÖTLEY CRÜE, ELTON JOHN, GUNS N' ROSES and CHEAP TRICK have recently done residencies and rock n' roll has definitely moved in! So, there was no better place for us to take the show. It was a fantastic experience for us and for our fans.”

Known for legendary arena shows, Def Leppard bring their extravagant production to your house as VIVA! Hysteria is their first full live show shot in HD released commercially. Finally VIVA! Hysteria showcases for the first time a career-defining album (excluding concept albums) performed live in its entirety - from start to finish - for a commercial audio/video release. VIVA! Hysteria! is unlike any show Def Leppard has ever done or will ever do again. This is one release not to miss.

Available on the following formats - 2CD+DVD digipak, Blu-Ray, DVD and digital album downloads – the full tracklistings are as follows:





'Love Bites'

'Pour Some Sugar On Me'

'Armageddon It'

'Gods Of War'

'Don't Shoot Shotgun'

'Run Riot'



'Love And Affection'

'Rock Of Ages' *

'Photograph' *

*extra non-Hysteria tracks


Ded Flatbird - Night 1:

'Good Morning Freedom'



'Mirror Mirror (Look Into My Eyes)'

'Action Not Words'

'Rock Brigade'



Ded Flatbird - Night 2:

'On Through The Night'


'Let It Go'

'Another Hit And Run'

'High 'n' Dry (Saturday Night)'

'Bringin' On The Heartbreak'

'Switch 625'

The DVD tracklisting is as above but also includes bonus content of the acoustic medley: 'Where Does Love Go When It Dies'/'Now'/'When Love & Hate Collide'/'Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad'/'Two Steps Behind'.

DVD / Blu Ray menu:

- VIVA Hysteria
- Ded Flatbird Night 1
- Ded Flatbird Night 2
- Acoustic Set
- Photo Montage

'Pour Some Sugar On Me':


EPK #1:

EPK #2:

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