Max Bell Centre, Calgary - Jan. 6, 2000

LISA WILTON -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 10:09 AM ET

CALGARY -- At their best, Def Leppard gave the world some of the best hard-rock riffs and fist-in-the-air choruses. At their worst, the English five-piece spewed forth unforgivable drivel, mostly heard on their massive-selling 1987 album Hysteria. Thankfully, though, the band utilized their entire catalogue -- from early releases to their latest album, Euphoria -- during last night's sold-out concert at the Max Bell Centre, rather than just concentrating on the big- hit albums like Hysteria or 1992's Adrenalize. It certainly wasn't the greatest-hits show many were hoping for. While they played several of their hit singles, including Animal, Foolin' and Pour Some Sugar on Me, it was obvious the band's main purpose last night was to sell copies of Euphoria. It proved to be a hard sell, as the crowd was clearly there to hear the older hits. Def Leppard may have scaled down the stage show -- what, no pyrotechnics? -- from previous years, but in this stage of their game the Leppard need not show off with crazy stage antics, as the music speaks for itself. Singer Joe Elliott, looking smart in a three-quarter length animal-print jacket, was in fine form, bounding back and forth across the stage, encouraging fans to sing and clap along to the more upbeat numbers. The rest of the band also performed well, adding in perfectly executed backing harmonies, although they relied a lot on cliched rock moves and poses to get the audience going. Still, despite the lack of flashy stage gimmicks, it was still an entertaining show. Def Leppard had their work cut out for them following the brilliance that was Joan Jett's opening performance. Clad in a black vinyl halter top and black leather pants, the 5 ft.-5 spitfire grabbed the audience by its proverbial, um, neck and didn't let go until the second she left the stage. The blistering 45-minute set consisted of The Blackhearts' greatest hits, as well as a few newer ones off her latest album, Pure and Simple. Jett put "rock chicks" like Alanis Morissette and Fiona Apple to shame.

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