Saxon continues to Rock with Old School Heavy Metal


7670060929Saxon – the words durable, old school, enduring and still excellent at their Metal craft, come to my mind. Let’s be honest, this is not the same Saxon from their “Denim and Leather” days, yet they are Saxon 2009 – that is Metal-good enough for me. Saxon was an essential part of “the new wave of British Heavy Metal”, going back to the late 1970’s into the early 1980’s. When I first heard Saxon back then, I felt like I found a band no one else knew about… I had a cool Metal secret. Well, the secret was already out, as I later found. Saxon was justifiable a favorite of legions of Metalheads, therefore I was not alone with my new found Heavy Metal band after all. 

568497a3ad“into the Labyrinth” is the newest album from Saxon, released on January 13, 2009. “Battalions Of Steel” and “Valley Of The Kings” have an almost majestic Power Metal sound, complete with keyboards and what sounds to me like an enlightened choir. For me, Saxon pulls it off extremely well when they go the Power Metal route. “Live To Rock” is the single being pushed off of this album, it is bona fide Old School Heavy Metal with a cool, vintage, anthemic delivery to it. This is the fist raising – head banging tune that will stir up plenty of 80’s Heavy Metal memories for many. “Slow Lane Blues” is another fine example of how Saxon holds onto the Classic Metal approach, a fun tune that tells the complete story of a dude being pulled over by a cop for speeding. “Crime Of Passion” is heavy, heavy, Metal. Nigel Glockler punishes the drum kit on this song, again, head banging can and may occur when listening to this song too. If there is to be a song on this album that is considered a ballad, well, “Voice” is it. However, this is a heavy ballad – staunch Metalheads need not worry – Saxon does not get sappy here at all. “Hellcat” is my favorite track on this album, it is fast, furious and heavy. The three key Metal music ingredients I always embrace! “Come Rock Of Ages (The Circle Is Complete)” is a Heavy Metal exclamation point for Saxon on this album, man this song is good. “Coming Home (Bottleneck Version)” is a back woods – lets stomp in the swamp – foot stomping tune. It is a cool way to come down after the previous 12 tracks of fired up Heavy Metal.

Biff Byford on lead vocals sounds fabulous throughout “into the Labyrinth”, he is what I consider truly underrated, as a Heavy Metal front man. Biff Byford is like the silent elder Metal statesman – compared to the press the other more popular lead vocalists of Old School Heavy Metal receive. Doug Scarratt and Paul Quinn are a cool and talented guitar duo to listen to, I have sincere Metal admiration for both. Nibbs Carter on bass hooks up with Nigel Glockler on drums to provide a top tier rhythm section of crushing Heavy Metal. Overall, long time Saxon fans should gobble up this new album, new fans should be easily recruited. When you have 13 songs this good, with tunes that Rock this heavy, I feel you have a Metal winner. 

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3 Responses to “Saxon continues to Rock with Old School Heavy Metal”

  1. I could never get into them at all.

  2. Saxon is like a fine wine….better with age, the latest is sooo good.

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