CD review SAXON "Saxon" / "Wheels of Steel" / Strong Arms of the Law" - re-issues

(8/10) (10/10) (9/10) I few weeks ago I could witness Saxon live on stage. The five-piece from Birmingham played a fabulous show at 013 in Tilburg,  a set that featured classics like "747 (Strangers in the Night)", "Heavy Metal Thunder" and Wheels of Steel". To enjoy these songs also at home and while being on the road, BMG reissues the first three longplayer of the NWoBHM legend.

The debut, simply entitled "Saxon", was originally released in 1979 and was the start of an impressive career in rock. NWoBHM started to gain momentum at the end of the 70's and had an impact on Saxon sounds. The band, that belongs to the pioneers of metal, combined this new rising metal style with glam-rock and progressive influences, leading to songs like "Judgement Day" and "Backs to the Wall". What's the real benefit of this re-issue is the comprehensive booklet that comes with the CD and it's additional bonus tracks that enriches this release. Five songs from the demo are part of the re-release plus songs that came out of a BBC session in 1980 and a live recording from Donington, recorded in the same year.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Rainbow Theme
  2. Frozen Rainbow
  3. Big Teaser
  4. Judgement Day
  5. Stallions Of The Highway
  6. Backs To The Wall
  7. Still Fit To Boogie
  8. Militia Guard

 

CD Bonus Tracks:

  1. Big Teaser (demo 1978)
  2. Stallions Of The Highway (demo 1978)
  3. Backs To The Wall (demo 1978)
  4. Rainbow Theme (demo 1978)
  5. Frozen Rainbow (demo 1978)
  6. Backs To The Wall (BBC session 1980)
  7. Stallions Of The Highway (BBC session 1980)
  8. Motorcycle Man (BBC session 1980)
  9. Still Fit To Boogie (BBC session 1980)
  10. 747 (Strangers In The Night) (BBC session 1980)
  11. Judgement Day (BBC session 1980)
  12. Still Fit To Boogie (Live at Donington 1980)
  13. Backs To The Wall (BBC session 1980)
  14. Stallions Of The Highway (BBC session 1980)

 

Label: BMG

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: March 30th, 2018

CD review SAXON "Saxon" / "Wheels of Steel" / Strong Arms of the Law" - re-issues

One year later, Saxon released their sophomore longplayer "Wheels of Steel" which belongs to the shining pearls in metal. The record was a break-through for the quintet from the UK with entering the single charts twice. Furthermore the album achieved gold-status and tunes like "747 (Strangers in the Night)", "Motorcycle Man" and "Wheels of Steel" are indispensable parts of present live sets. Like with the others re-releases also "Wheels of Steel" comes with an extensive booklet that features photos, lyrics and additional background information when it comes to band and album. The special treat is again some demo versions and live recording from this early era of one of the most influential heavy metal bands.

 

(10/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Motorcycle Man
  2. Stand Up And Be Counted
  3. 747 (Strangers In The Night)
  4. Wheels Of Steel
  5. Freeway Mad
  6. See The Light Coming
  7. Street Fighting Gang
  8. Suzie Hold On
  9. Machine Gun

 

CD Bonus Tracks

  1. Suzie Hold On (1980 demo rehearsals)
  2. Wheels Of Steel (1980 demo rehearsals)
  3. Stallions Of The Highway (Live B-side)
  4. Motorcycle Man (Live at Donington 1980)
  5. Freeway Mad (Live at Donington 1980)
  6. Wheels Of Steel (Live at Donington 1980)
  7. 747 (Strangers In The Night) (Live at Donington 1980)
  8. Machine Gun (Live at Donington 1980)

 

Label: BMG

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: March 30th, 2018

CD review SAXON "Saxon" / "Wheels of Steel" / Strong Arms of the Law" - re-issues

Biff Byford and bandmates have been extremely busy and productive in 1980. The highly acclaimed second longplayer saw the light of day, the band performed at the legendary Monsters Of Rock festival and Donington and last but not least it was the third longplayer that came out after summer. 6 months after "Wheels of Steel" arrived at the record stores it was "Strong Arm of the Law" that followed. In times when some bands work for years on their next release it's amazing that Saxon could do such a job in half a year by not compromising on quality at all. It proves that if you're bursting to do something in short time and with enormous passion you can achieve it. As with the predecessor also "Strong Arms of the Law" features songs that are a standard at any Saxon show. Classics such as the title track and "Dallas 1pm" are part of this disc that established the band in heavy metal. Bonus tracks are part of this re-release too, as with the other two albums. 

Saxon's first three longplayers, actually all their longplayers, are a 'must' for any seriously meant metal record collection. If you missed them to date, this is your chance to close the gap. 

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Heavy Metal Thunder
  2. To Hell And Back Again
  3. Strong Arm Of The Law
  4. Taking Your Chances
  5. 20,000 FT
  6. Hungry Years
  7. Sixth Form Girls
  8. Dallas 1PM

 

CD Bonus Tracks

  1. 20,000 FT (BBC session 1982)
  2. Dallas 1PM (BBC session 1982)
  3. The Eagle Had Landed (BBC session 1982)
  4. 747 (Strangers In The Night) (BBC session 1982)
  5. To Hell And Back Again (Abbey Road mix)
  6. 20,000FT (Abbey Road mix)
  7. Mandy (Early version of Sixth Form Girls)
  8. Heavy Metal Thunder (Abbey Road mix)

 

Label: BMG

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: March 30th, 2018

Photo: Markus Wiedenmann

Photo: Markus Wiedenmann

Tag(s) : #Saxon, #Reissue, #News, #NWoBHM, #Heavy Metal, #Wheels of Steel, #Strong Arms of the Law, #CD Review