Sioux Falls Got Rocked with Def Leppard and Journey, Check Out the Pictures and Video!
It may have been the third time in five years that Def Leppard graced the stage inside the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center, but the packed venue was a strong sign that Sioux Falls loves Def Leppard and welcomed them back with open arms. Oh wait, that's a Journey song. Well, Journey was there too!
The bands are on a co-headling tour across North America. Wednesday night, July 18, Journey opened in Sioux Falls. The band is led by Arnel Pineda, a former cover band singer Neal Schon and Jonathan Cain found on YouTube. Journey purists still want Steve Perry, but if you close your eyes, you'd think you were listening to him. Personally, I think Arnel is a great replacement. He's full of energy and constantly engages the crowd. It does look like tour life has taken a toll on Arnel over the past 11 years. His hair is now mostly gray.
Original members Neal Schon and Ross Valory, along with longtime member Jonathan Cain and drummer Steve Smith make up the rest of the band. Steve Smith has played with the band over the course of the years and rejoined the band in 2015 after longtime drummer Dean Castronovo was fired after he was arrested for domestic violence.
Journey's setlist included their greatest hits from "Separate Ways" to "Stone in Love" to their massive hit "Don't Stop Believin'."
I had read many reviews about this tour and the one complaint of nearly every city was that Journey's sound was off. It was noticeable in Sioux Falls Wednesday night. The sound seemed muffled at times and when Jonathan Cain was introducing "Faithfully" you could barely understand what he was saying. You may want to check into that, guys. You still have a few more stops on this tour.
After a 30 minute intermission, the crowd was ready for their favorite band from the across the pond. The sound was much better for Def Leppard's set and Joe Elliot's voice was on point. After 40 years of shows, he was still hitting the high notes. Yes, 40 years. As a matter of fact, it was a celebration at the PREMIER Center on Wednesday night. Joe Elliot announced that it was the 40th anniversary of their very first show at Westfield School in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England.
The band has had the same lineup since 1992. Vivian Campbell replaced Steve Clark in 1992 after Clark died of alcohol poisoning. Otherwise, Joe Elliot and Rick Savage have been together for over 40 years with Rick Allen joining in 1978 and Phil Collen taking over guitar in 1982. Speaking of Phil Collen. He gives Dan Reynolds of Imagine Dragons a run for his money in the no shirt/rock hard abs department.
The setlist consisted of "Let's Get Rocked," "Love Bites," "Hysteria" and even a cover of the David Essex song "Rock On." For "Two Steps Behind" the whole band came to the catwalk and did an acoustic version. Even Rick Allen came out from behind his drums with a maraca and joined the band.
The PREMIER Center looked like it was nearly a sold-out crowd with a full floor, upper and lower levels.