Christina Fuoco-Karasinski of SoundSpike recently conducted an interview with DEF LEPPARD guitarist Phil Collen. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow below.
SoundSpike: With “Mirror Ball”, the album sounds cohesive. It doesn’t sound like each song was recorded in a different building.
Collen: It’s just the audience, really, and how loud you want to put them in the mix. We’re fairly consistent. I’ve been using the same amp for 15 years when we’re playing live. We have the same blend. It sounds pretty similar every night.
SoundSpike: What was the biggest challenge with recording live album?
Collen: Actually, there was none because it was almost like we didn’t even realize we’d done one. We’d recorded it during the 2008-2009 tours. We pretty much recorded every night. We had all this material we had already recorded. We didn’t have to do much at all except mix it.
SoundSpike: DEF LEPPARD wrote three songs for “Mirror Ball”. What was the songwriting process like?
Collen: We actually had done it quite different. Joe Elliott [vocals] wrote one. I wrote one with my buddy CJ Vanston out in L.A., and [bassist] Rick Savage wrote one and we just played on each other’s songs. That was it, really. We didn’t sit around in a room and all sit in there together. Again, we do that with some of the other songs, anyway. A lot of the stuff in the past has been done in that kind of way. It’s a very easy process, that one.
SoundSpike: What’s still your favorite song to play live?
Collen: I really like playing “Rocket”. It, in a nutshell, sums up DEF LEPPARD, I think. It’s got all the great elements — big drums, big guitars, big hooks, big choruses. Even the subject matter; it’s name-checking a lot of the bands that have influenced us. I really like playing that one for many reasons. That’s the main one — the fact that that it’s so representative of us.
Read the entire interview from SoundSpike.