Animal (Def Leppard song)

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Single by Def Leppard
from the album Hysteria
B-side "Tear It Down" (UK)
"I Wanna Be Your Hero" (US)
Released 20 July 1987 (UK)
September 1987 (US)
Format 7"
Recorded 1984-1986
Genre Hard rock, pop metal
Length 4:02
Label Mercury
Songwriter(s) Joe Elliott, Phil Collen, Steve Clark, Rick Savage, Robert John "Mutt" Lange
Producer(s) Robert John "Mutt" Lange
Def Leppard singles chronology


"Animal" is a song recorded by English hard rock band Def Leppard in 1987 from the album Hysteria. It was the second single release off the album, and became the band's first Top 10 hit in their native UK, reaching No. 6 on the UK Singles Chart.[1]


"Animal" is usually noted by the band as having been the most difficult track to record for Hysteria. Although it was one of the first songs developed in early 1984, neither the band nor the producers who came and went (Jim Steinman, Nigel Green, & Mutt Lange) were able to produce the desired sound until two and a half painstaking years later. Due to its early beginnings, it was the only Hysteria track demoed by Rick Allen on an acoustic drum kit prior to his car accident, Allen having recorded a drum beat for the song onto a four track tape during early sessions.[2]

However, the effort paid off when "Animal" was released as the lead single off the album in July 1987. In the UK, where the band was all but ignored during the Pyromania era, the song hit #6 on the singles chart and broke Def Leppard into the pop mainstream across Europe.

Over in America, the lead single "Women" performed poorly on the pop charts, which didn't give the band much momentum when "Animal" was released afterwards in October 1987. It did reach a respectable #19, though, starting their run of ten consecutive U. S. Billboard Top 40 singles, and is still one of the most popular numbers at Def Leppard concerts today.

The single's UK B-side, "Tear It Down", was written during a recording session following the completion of the Hysteria album, where the band laid down several tracks intended as B-sides for the Hysteria singles. Subsequently, the song itself received radio airplay. The line in the song, "Like the restless rust, I never sleep", is a reference to Neil Young's album Rust Never Sleeps.

The band later re-recorded "Tear It Down" for the Adrenalize album.

Track listing[edit]

7": Bludgeon Riffola / LEP1 (UK)[edit]

On the back there is a picture of the band on some train rails. The photograph was taken by Laurie Lewis.

  1. "Animal"
  2. "Tear It Down"

7": Mercury / PolyGram / 888-832-7 (US)[edit]

  1. "Animal"
  2. "I Wanna Be Your Hero"


Def Leppard[edit]


Chart (1987–88) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[3] 46
Belgium (Ultratop 50 Flanders)[4] 32
Canada 100 Singles (RPM)[5] 21
Ireland (IRMA)[6] 3
Netherlands (Single Top 100)[7] 20
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[8] 8
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[9] 17
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[10] 6
US Billboard Hot 100[11] 19
US Album Rock Tracks (Billboard)[12] 5


  1. ^ Neil Warwick, Jon Kutner, Tony Brown (2004) The complete book of the British charts: singles & albums Omnibus Press, 2004
  2. ^ DVD - Classic Albums: Def Leppards Hysteria. Bonus Features.
  3. ^ " – Def Leppard – Animal". ARIA Top 50 Singles. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  4. ^ " – Def Leppard – Animal" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  5. ^ "RPM 100 Singles" (PDF). RPM. Ottawa: Library and Archives Canada. 47 (12). December 26, 1987. OCLC 352936026. Retrieved February 23, 2017. 
  6. ^ "The Irish Charts – Search Results – Animal". Irish Singles Chart. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  7. ^ " – Def Leppard – Animal" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  8. ^ " – Def Leppard – Animal". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  9. ^ " – Def Leppard – Animal". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  10. ^ "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  11. ^ "Def Leppard Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved February 23, 2017.
  12. ^ "Def Leppard – Chart history". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved February 23, 2017. 

External links[edit]