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Def Leppard's Vivian Campbell Looks Back On 'Slang' Album: 'I Don't Think Any Of Us Knew What Was Going On'

In a brand new interview with About Heavy Metal Def Leppard guitarist Vivian Campbell was asked what he remembers most about the sessions for "Slang", his first studio album with the band, which came out twenty years ago. He responded: "That was a strange time for the band because the music industry, as you know, had gone through a radical change in the early '90s. Right around the time when the 'Adrenalize' record was coming out, the tide was really changing with the whole grunge movement. We were really swimming upstream with that one. Then by the time we got into the studio for the next record, 'Slang', we were at a strange time. We didn't really know what we were going to do or what we could do. The only clear point that we had when we were starting to make the 'Slang' record was that we could not make a record that sounded like Def Leppard. We knew that we would be totally crucified if we made a record with big harmony vocals and lush production. It was just so against the trend of what was popular at the time, so there was that going on. Then, furthermore, I think we were all at that time in our life when we were starting to have grown-up real life issues affect us like death and divorce. Sav's [bassist Rick Savage] father passed away on the eve of going into the studio to make that record. Joe [Elliott, vocals] and Phil [Collen, guitar] were both going through divorces. It's just stuff was happening."

He continued: "We were never going to go in to making that record and write a song like 'Let's Got Rocked'. That was definitely not going to happen. It actually did put us in that frame of mind where we could be more reflective. We were going to make a darker record. It really was starting to shape up that way and I actually love the sound of that record. I love the sonics of it. I love the way that we technically recorded it. We didn't process stuff very much. We didn't do too many overdubs. The guitar sounded great. Rick [Allen] used acoustic drums for the first time in decades. It's a good-sounding record."

Campbell does admit that he wishes now that "on some of the songs we'd maybe compromised a little bit and worked a little bit more towards incorporating some of the things that Def Leppard were famous for

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