Pyromania (album)

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Def Leppard - Pyromania.jpg
Studio album by Def Leppard
Released 20 January 1983
Recorded January – November 1982 at Park Gates Studios, Battle, East Sussex, England, and Battery Studios, London
Genre Heavy metal, hard rock
Length 44:57
Label Vertigo (UK and Europe)
Mercury (USA)
Producer Robert John "Mutt" Lange
Def Leppard chronology
High 'n' Dry
Singles from Pyromania
  1. "Photograph"
    Released: 3 February 1983
  2. "Rock of Ages"
    Released: May 1983[1]
  3. "Foolin'"
    Released: September 1983[1]
  4. "Too Late for Love"
    Released: 25 November 1983

Pyromania is the third studio album by English rock band Def Leppard, released on 20 January 1983. It is the first album to feature guitarist Phil Collen and was produced by Robert John "Mutt" Lange. The album was a huge success, charting at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and No. 18 on the UK Albums Chart and selling over ten million copies in the US, and thus being certified diamond by the RIAA.[2][3]


The album was partially recorded with original guitarist Pete Willis, whose rhythm guitar tracks appear on all songs. Midway through the recording sessions, Willis was fired for excessive alcohol abuse and replaced by Phil Collen, who contributed guitar solos and other parts that had not yet been recorded by Willis. On the original LP release, Willis is visible in the background of the photograph of singer Joe Elliott, while Collen is given his own personal photo as the new full-time member of the group.

The album can also be seen as a transitional one between the heavy metal sound of their first two albums and the beginning of the radio-friendly direction of later releases. The album featured heavy metal rockers such as "Rock! Rock! (Till You Drop)", "Stagefright" and "Die Hard the Hunter" as well as Top-40 hits "Photograph", "Rock of Ages" and "Foolin'".


The album caused controversy with its cover artwork, which shows an animated picture of a skyscraper building with a large flame and black smoke coming out from the top floor, and a bullseye pointed at the flame. Many[which?] stores were offended by this cover and refused to sell the album.[citation needed]

Reception and legacy[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
AllMusic 5/5 stars[4]
Robert Christgau (C)
Rolling Stone 4/5 stars link
Sputnik Music 4.5/5 stars link
Thrash Hits 5.5/6 stars link

Pyromania has received mostly positive reviews, being commonly considered, along with its follow-up Hysteria, one of the band's finest efforts to date. AllMusic reviewer Steve Huey gave the album a rating of five stars and stated that it was "where the band's vision coalesced and gelled into something more." He also described the songs as "driven by catchy, shiny melodic hooks instead of heavy guitar riffs, although the latter do pop up once in a while", and later added that "transcendent hard rock perfection on Pyromania was surprisingly successful; their reach never exceeded their grasp, which makes the album an enduring (and massively influential) classic music.

With its melodic hooks and heavy MTV exposure, Pyromania became a massive success, and was a major catalyst for the 1980s melodic hard rock movement.[4] The album sold six million copies in the US in its original release (about 100,000 copies were sold per week for much of the year). It has since sold over ten million copies there and was certified diamond. Three songs, "Photograph", "Rock of Ages" and "Foolin'", became top 40 singles in the US.[5] In 2004, the album ranked No. 384 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.[6] In 2006, Q magazine placed the album at No. 35 in its list of "40 Best Albums of the '80s".[7]

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Rock! Rock! (Till You Drop)"   Steve Clark, Rick Savage, Mutt Lange, Joe Elliott 3:52
2. "Photograph"   Clark, Pete Willis, Savage, Lange, Elliott 4:12
3. "Stagefright"   Savage, Elliott, Lange 3:46
4. "Too Late for Love"   Clark, Lange, Willis, Savage, Elliott 4:30
5. "Die Hard the Hunter"   Lange, Clark, Savage, Elliott 6:17
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Foolin'"   Clark, Lange, Elliott 4:32
2. "Rock of Ages"   Clark, Lange, Elliott 4:09
3. "Comin' Under Fire"   Lange, Clark, Willis, Elliott 4:20
4. "Action! Not Words"   Lange, Clark, Elliott 3:49
5. "Billy's Got a Gun"   Clark, Savage, Willis, Elliott, Lange 5:56

Deluxe edition bonus CD[edit]


Additional musicians
Additional personnel


Country Provider Certification
(sales thresholds)
United States RIAA 10× Platinum
Canada CRIA 7× Platinum
United Kingdom BPI Silver

Catalog Numbers[edit]

  • USA: Mercury Records 810-308-1/2/4
  • UK: Vertigo Records 6359 119 [LP]/7150 119 [Cassette]/810,308-2 [CD]
  • USA: Mercury Records/Island Records/UMe B0012491-02 (Eco Friendly packaging of Mercury Records 810-308-2)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Senff, Mark. "Def Leppard Online Discography – 7" vinyl". Archived from the original on 8 December 2008. Retrieved 2 April 2011. 
  2. ^ "Allmusic (Def Leppard charts and awards) Billboard albums". 
  3. ^ "Def Leppard chart stats". Archived from the original on 2012-05-27. 
  4. ^ a b Huey, Steve (1983). "Review". Retrieved 7 July 2013. 
  5. ^ Def Leppard: Chart History Billboard. Retrieved 17 November 2011
  6. ^ 500 Greatest Albums of All Time: Pyromania – Def Leppard Rolling Stone. Retrieved 17 November 2011
  7. ^ Q August 2006, Issue 241

External links[edit]