This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
In the spirit of the NBA Finals and the state's upcoming Republican primary, it's tempting to want to cast Wednesday's Usana Amphitheatre concert as a Battle of the Bands.Which hard-rock band Def Leppard or Poison bested the other?
In the end, it was no contest, though opening act Poison, led by the death-defying and eternally tanned Bret Michaels, certainly did its best to warm up the crowd before Def Leppard's headlining set.But Poison was at a disadvantage because the L.A. foursome went onstage at 8 p.m., with the sun still high in the sky. Compared to Def Leppard's phalanx of lights, high-resolution video screens, enough fog to replicate London's, and the oiled chest of guitarist Phil Collen, Poison's set design of a banner proclaiming the band's 25th anniversary was understated.But showmanship goes a long way, and though Poison's best song-writing days ended 20 years ago, Michaels showed why he is one of the most likable frontmen in rock, no matter what red bandanna and green-glittered cowboy hat he sports on any given day. There is a reason The Donald chose him as the Celebrity Apprentice several seasons ago.
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