REVIEW: Def Leppard – “Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad” (1992 CD single)

Part three in a series on singles from Def Leppard’s Adrenalize, including hard to find B-sides!

DEL LEP SINGLE_0005DEF LEPPARD – “Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad” (1992 Phonogram CD single)

On their last single, “Make Love Like a Man”, Def Leppard released their first acoustic recording in a song called “Two Steps Behind”.  This time, they went all-in.  Not content with a couple acoustic guitars, Joe called up some friends from Hothouse Flowers (Fiachna Ó Braonáin, Liam Ó Maonlaí, and  Peter O’Toole) and formed an octet* called the Acoustic Hippies from Hell!  As the Acoustic Hippies, they did three songs:  an unreleased Joe original called “From the Inside” and two covers.  The Flowers brought tin whistle, piano and mandolin to the table.

“From the Inside” is a haunting number, with Joe singing about addiction from the perspective of the drug.  “I’ll shoot through your veins, I’ll drive you insane.”  Joe first played it for a television program called Friday at the Dome.  Liam Ó Maonlaí and he played it together as an experiment in artists from two different fields colliding.  Joe liked the song enough to record it here with the Acoustic Hippies.  This song was re-released in 1993 on Retro-Active, but added the original count-in from the session.  It’s certainly a good song but not easy for some Leppard fans to appreciate.

The guys then jam on 7 1/2 minutes of “You Can’t Always Get What You Want”.  This is a highlight of the single, a fantastic version that deserves more attention. You might be surprised just how good this is. It sounds 100% live, with people calling out cues and hoots and hollers. Almost as good is Hendrix’s “Little Wing”. Softer and less rambunctious, it is haunting more like “From the Inside”.  Thankfully these two tracks were later reissued on the Adrenalize deluxe edition.

These three B-sides completely outshine the A-side, the putrid “Have You Ever Needed Someone So Bad” from Adrenalize.  This annoying title is only slightly worse than the song itself, one of the most by-the-numbers ballads that Def Leppard have foisted upon the fans.  Of course it became a top 10 charting single in the US.

3.5/5 stars

* There are no drums but Rick Allen is credited for “acoustic inspiration”.

DEL LEP SINGLE_0006

Adrenalize singles:

Part 1:  “Let’s Get Rocked”
Part 2: “Make Love Like a Man”

Up next:  “Heaven Is”

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24 comments

  1. So far sounds like Make Love is the better CD single for the B-sides!?

    Fer these ears however Adrenalize was without doubt the decline in DL world, reading about these tunes reminds me how much I disliked the album when released (aside from maybe one or two tracks), and in particular the weak attempt at recreating Pour Some Sugar that was Let’s Get Rocked LOL, which IMO was THE worst thing they recorded up to that point :(

    BUT, these are fun reads and ‘almost’ have me thinking about revisiting the album… Thinking about it ;)

    Liked Slang better and really enjoyed the single reviews for that one too Mike. Hysteria was full of fantastic B-sides too, would love to read yer thoughts on those after this lot (unless they’ve been done and have failed to find them during my ‘search’ here!? ;)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t know if that’s a fair assessment because these are only the singles. Also I’ve been fairly critical of ballads. Adrenalize was the best thing they were capable of doing under extraordinary circumstances.

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      1. I’m the type of rotter that judges a band by their singles ;)

        (I think Adrenalize is the only Def Leppard album I haven’t actually heard).

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  2. There are some negative comments about Adrenalize and in some cases justified. However any review of that album now 23 years later has to be made in context. Whilst the album isn’t as ‘full sounding’ as Hysteria the production is pretty much top class. Although there is the Deluxe Edition, the original CD pressing still sounds amazing. Incidentally I have the 1993 gatefold CD re-release which includes ‘She’s Too Tough’ and ‘Miss You In A Heartbeat’, both different from the versions on Retro Active.

    Back to Adrenalize; this album was very much in progress from 1989 therefore the issues surrounding Steve Clark’s health and ultimately sad death ensured this was released 1-2 years too late. If Steve had remained healthy, then this could have been out in 1991 resulting in a less poppy sound and with more input from Steve (who was always the more ‘rock’ between himself and Phil Collen).

    Whilst this isn’t at the top of my favourite Def Leppard albums, it is one of the most ‘fun’ which is fair enough. They came out of a massive tiring 2 year world tour to have their original guitarist die. They came back smiling….fair play! Do You Wanna Get Rocked?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yup I fully agree with all of this. As I said to J, I think Def Lep did the very best they could under very difficult circumstances. As far as I’m concerned they did the “real” sequel to Hysteria on Slang. They returned to being fearless and experimental. Cheers!

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  3. I’m with Deke on this one, whoa nelly that was bad. “one of the most by-the-numbers ballads that Def Leppard have foisted upon the fans” indeed. Yawn.

    I do like me some Hothouse Flowers, though. I’m intrigued by the b-sides. Stones and Hendrix? Ballsy!

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    1. I really dig on the Stones and Hendrix covers. I think when you change a song in instrumentation, it helps avoid the trap of “comparison”.

      Always thought Hothouse Flowers shoulda woulda coulda been bigger.

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  4. Haha, I’ll always have a soft spot for that putrid ballad all the same! ’92 was a big music gateway year for me, I remember the A-side stalling at #2 on Much Music’s Coca-Cola Countdown. Can’t recall what kept it out of #1!

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        1. Well Geoff I’ll tell you something. I’ve decided that as far as my life goes, blogging IS a useful purpose! That’s how I feel about it anyway. It makes me feel good to regurgitate old music stories, and also to immortalize them forever!

          Liked by 1 person

        2. Hear hear!
          Oh I’d say it’s quite useful – I like how the blogs are live documents too, it’s not a book that sits static on the shelf (books are great too of course), but it’s a conversation.
          And I think my wonderful wife appreciates that I’m conversing about obscure music trivia with someone other than her!

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        3. Yeah my wife is totally supportive of my hobby/habit too.

          Speaking of spousal musical conversations, we had a wonderful one about bassist Billy Sheehan today, while rocking out to some David Lee Roth and Winery Dogs. She was really digging his bass work.

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