The British NWOBHM legends, Saxon, released their 19th studio album CALL TO ARMS in May 2011 and they have been touring heavily across the globe. Although the band had been annual visitors to Finland, they now played their first show in Helsinki in four years! The support band for this leg of tour was Canadian metal band Anvil. It seems that there’s a great demand for these classic bands in Finland as this show sold out with the 1000 person capacity reached right after tickets came on sale.
Lion Music and Intromental Worldwide are proud to announce that Canadian metallers BOREALIS have been officially confirmed as the support band in the upcoming SAXON North American tour. The band will tour in support of their sophomore effort, “Fall From Grace”, released earlier this year via Lion Music. Starting on September 29th, the tour will stop at fifteen cities across the country. Tour dates are as follows:
28.09.2011 US Los Angeles, CA – The Key Club
29.09.2011 US Santa Rosa, CA – The Last Day Saloon
30.09.2011 US Sactramento, CA – The Boardwalk
01.10.2011 US Santa Clara, CA – The Avalon
02.10.2011 US Santa Ana, CA – The Galaxy
03.10.2011 US Las Vegas, NV – The Crown
04.10.2011 US Tempe, AZ – Club Red
06.10.2011 US Houston, TX – Stereo Live
08.10.2011 US Saint Charles (Chicago), IL – The Arcada Theatre
One of the leading bands of the ‘New Wave of British Heavy Metal’ movement, Saxon, is about to hit the U.S. shores hard once more. On September 27th, Saxon will release their 19th studio album overall, ‘Call to Arms’ (via UDR Music/EMI), and starting the following day, will launch a Stateside tour.
And as evidenced by such ass-kickers as “Hammer of the Gods” and “Call to Arms,” the group hasn’t lost their grip on composing hard-hitting yet anthemic heavy metal with their latest offering.
Comprised of members Biff Byford (vocals), Doug Scarratt (guitar), Paul Quinn (guitar), Nibbs Carter (bass), Nigel Glockler (drums), Saxon is responsible for penning some of the 1980’s most enduring metal anthems, including “Wheels of Steel,” “Strong Arm of the Law,” “Motorcycle Man,” “Princess of the Night,” and “Never Surrender,” and along with the likes of Iron Maiden and Def Leppard, helped breath life back into a metal scene that many had left for dead at the time.
It’s been 35 years since Saxon was originally up and running, and the group can still easily hold their own with the headbanging competition.
“It’s important to keep one foot in the past and one foot very much in the present,” says Byford. “At some points in your life, whether you’re younger or older, you do have these wonderful periods of ‘state of graceness’ where everyone likes everything you write. But you can’t keep being your own tribute band, you have to try and write great new songs, and you have to try to appeal to a younger audience. Saxon has been successfully doing that for the last decade, and the result is we still have our old fan base but we also have a whole new, younger one too.”
Saxon’s latest video clip, for the song “Call to Arms,” will be premiered this Friday, August 5th at noon EST on America Online Noisecreep.
And hardcore Saxon fans will surely be interested in tracking down the “Digipack” version of ‘Call to Arms,’ as it includes a glorious bonus – a free seven-track CD, ‘Live at Donington 1980.’
Soon, U.S. fans will be able to recapture “The Power and the Glory” of Saxon all over again – with the release of ‘Call to Arms,’ and on a concert stage near you.
‘CALL TO ARMS’ TRACK LISTING:
01 Hammer of the Gods
02 Back in 79
03 Surviving Against the Odds
04 Mists of Avalon
05 Call To Arms
06 Chasing the Bullet
08 When Doomsday Comes (Hybrid Theory)
09 No Rest for the Wicked
10 Ballad of the Working Man
11 Call To Arms – orchestral version
DIGIPACK BONUS FEATURE:
Live At Donington 1980 [Re-mixed and re-mastered from original multitrack tape]
01 MOTORCYCLE MAN
02 STILL FIT TO BOOGIE
03 FREEWAY MAD
04 BACKS TO THE WALL
05 WHEELS OF STEEL
06 BAP SHU AP
07 747 (STRANGERS IN THE NIGHT)
9-28-11 Key Club, West Hollywood, CA
9-29-11 Last Day Saloon, Santa Rosa, CA
9-30-11 Avalon, Santa Clara, CA
10-1-11 The Boardwalk, Orangevale, CA
10-2-11 Galaxy Theatre, Santa Ana, CA
10-5-11 Club Red, Tempe, AZ
10-7-11 Sunken Gardens, San Antonio, TX
10-8-11 The Arcada Theatre, St. Charles, IL
10-10-11 Foufounes Electriques, Montreal, QC
10-13-11 B.B. Kings, New York, NY
10-14-11 Jaxx, Springfield, VA
10-15-11 Bourbon Street, Baltimore, MD
Let Me Hear You Scream Sweden Rockkkk.Well the annual roadtrip to Swedenrock by the Finnish Metal Rules.com team is already into it’s 11th year! The 2011 line up presented a wide range of metal and hard rock in the line-up. Over 70 metal and rock bands offered one hell of an experience for the attendees. Sweden Rock has been successful during the past ten years as the festival has always been sold out. This year wasn’t any exception as the fest was sold out despite the lousy economic situation worldwide and the ticket price had risen a little bit. ver these 11 years of coverage, it has become quite logical for us to give an in depth article of several bands performing at Sweden Rock to all the readers out there. The weather once again showed positive and negative aspects like in 2010. It either rained or was windy with a little sunshine. But we were there for bands, not for having some beach party crap. Unfortunately, we are not able to cover every bloody band, but hopefully you will have a pleasant reading experience… Enjoy or die!!!
Sauna Open Air Festival 2011, 9th-11th June Tampere, Finland
Review by Luxi Lahtinen, live pictures by Luxi Lahtinen & Terhi Pihlaja
The 8th Sauna Open Air festival was celebrated in a very sunny and warm weather, unlike in some other years – and this year the festival also broke their own record, welcoming as many as 26,000 people within the three days.
The SOA festival has truly found an important place among the other Finnish summer festivals, concentrating mostly on old-school Heavy/Thrash Metal and Hard Rock bands – and turning the festival around for the past 3-4 years or so, by booking many internationally big names for the three-day Metal feasts; from Kiss to Megadeth to Dio to Whitesnake to Scorpions to Type O Negatíve – and the list goes on.
This year, the festival organizers had very special grins – wider than ever before, spread all over their faces – and for some very good reasons. Two of the biggest headliners, Ozzy Osbourne and Judas Priest, arrived at SOA for the first time, with bands like Saxon, Accept, Doro, Cavalera Conspiracy, Joey Belladonna and many others proving to be good company to them.
Read on – the following article is based on the seven most interesting and musically satisfying bands of this year’s festival from your truly point of view.
Eric MacKinnon at RockAAA.com recently caught up with SAXON frontman Biff Byford, who revealed some of the band’s future plans. An excerpt from the interview is available below:
Saxon frontman Biff Byford has revealed the band’s next project will see them join forces with Polish Philharmonic Orchestra to give some of their most famous songs an orchestral overhaul. The veteran rockers are thrashing out the details which will see them head for Poland for a special performance of unplugged and orchestral versions of their songs which will then be filmed for a DVD – as will the build up as part of a ‘Making of’ documentary.
In a RockAAA exclusive Byford revealed:
“We’re going to do a show with an orchestra next year in Warsaw. The guy who runs the Philharmonic Orchestra asked us to do and we fancied it as we have a quite few songs which are scored to orchestra like ‘Call To Arms’ on the new album and we’ve just done ‘Crusader’ with an orchestra which sounds fantastic, so it will be a bit unplugged and a bit orchestra and a bit of heavy metal too.
It will be filmed and we’ll do a making of, too. We don’t know exactly when that will be but we’re trying to work it out now as it is a nightmare logistically.”
SAXON vocalist, Biff Byford, checks in with the following news from the road:
“Played the first gig of the world tour last night in Thessaloniki (Greece, at Principal Club Theatre). Fantastic audience! The first audience in Thessaloniki set the bench mark for the craziest audience, so come on, it is up to you guys.
A bit of further news: Coolhead Productions are giving us 200 Heavy Metal Thunder – The Movie DVDs, which are the last few left from the limited edition series. 5 signed copies will be on the T-Shirt store in the way out every night across Europe for 30.- £ and 35.- €.
We’re just writing the blog while we are waiting to get to the gig in Athens.
Keep the faith!”
Check out some video footage from the Thessaloniki gig below:
Just after Midnight (early on Thursday) while on stage at the 700000 Tons of Metal cruise, Biff Byford for the first time ever pubically announced the name of the new Saxon album. The album will be called A Call To Arms and will be out later in 2011.
To see daily updates from 70000TONS of METAL go HERE.
Saxon to Sweden Rock once again. Not only are they one of the biggest, most classic bands from the perennial New Wave of British Heavy Metal – they are also one of the bands the audience at SRF never get tired of seeing. Now they come to celebrate the fact that their classic album “Denim & Leather turns 30 years old and they will perform the whole album at next years Sweden Rock, of course spiced with allot of other immortal Saxon classics and yes, they will bring the eagle!
We can also present another 3 confirmed bands. American countrypunk in the shape of classic JASON AND THE SCORCHERS, melodic speed metal or call it US-power metal from AGENT STEEL and Swedish progg from legendary FLÄSKET BRINNER (The pork is burning).
In 1979 when the classic NWOBHM band SAXON was formed its ranks consisted of five members, singer Biff Byford, guitarist Paul Quinn, guitarist Graham Oliver, bassist Steve Dawson and drummer Pete Gill. Now, thirty years later only Byford and Quinn remain under the SAXON banner. However, Oliver and Dawson have since joined together to carry on their part of the SAXON legacy. First, in 1996, under the name SON OF A BITCH, with Pete Gill on drums, and later, mainly to appease the promoters, as OLIVER/DAWSON SAXON. Read on to learn, straight from two founding members of SAXON, about the various stages in the history of one of the most celebrated metal bands to have emerged from the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, and the falling apart, piece by piece, of its classic lineup through the years.
The last time Saxon graced a stage in San Antonio, Texas was in 2002 when the long standing British Metal institution recorded several live tracks for the "Heavy Metal Thunder" release. It would be seven years and what would seem like forever before Saxon would return to the US. At last the band of Brits had returned to play three US concerts; kicking things off at the BB Kings venue in New York before passing through San Antonio to headline an outdoor festival at the Sunken Gardens Ampitheatre before wrapping things up the next night at the Meridian Theater in Houston, Texas.
By the time you read this the band will be back in Europe headlining outdoor Heavy Metal festivals such as the upcoming Wacken Open Air in early August. Plans are tentatively underway to return to the States possibly on a package tour sometime later in the summer.
Legendary vocalist and Saxon co-founder Biff Byford sat down with me to discuss the bands current activities; including the newly released "Into The Labrinyth" album, an upcoming unplugged live release where the band will collaborate with a full symphony orchestra, the band’s unique Riff King YouTube contest, the early days of the NWOBHM scene and more…
Enjoy, and fill your heads with Heavy Metal Thunder!