Saxon - Sacrifice 4/5

Reviewed: 9-1-13


1. Procession
2. Sacrifice
3. Made in Belfast
4. Warriors of the road
5. Guardians of the tomb
6. Stand up and fight
7. Walking the steel
8. Night of the wolf
9. Wheels of terror
10. Standing in a queue

It’s amazing to realize that this is the 20th CD from British legends Saxon. It stands solidly with the rest of their recent catalog, pure, standard and devastatingly effective heavy metal, with no surprises and no disappointment.

62-year-old Biff Byford still belts out his passionate and recognizable vocals and powerfully as ever, and guitarist Paul Quinn, with the band since the beginning, lays down the solid metal crunch and leads. He’s joined by Doug Scarratt, who has been with the band since 'Unleash the beast', which to my mind is the demarcation of the present version of Saxon’s consistent excellence. Long-time members Nibbs Carter on bass and Nigel Glockner on drums (probably could guess they were British just by reading their names!) set down a devastatingly roaring rhythm section of clear, anthemic heavy metal, and it’s wrapped up in a strong, superb production.

The band has always mixed up their intellectual historical topics with paeans to rock itself, but this CD is more on the side of the former. “Made in Belfast” tells the tale of the Titantic’s creation while “Walking the steel” is similarly constructive, but touching on the rebuilding from Ground Zero in New York City. The title track is of ancient Central American blood rituals, and “Guardians of the tomb” is about the Chinese Terracotta army. All in all, great stuff, and the only lighter topic is “Standing in a queue”, about, well, waiting in line, and is perhaps the greatest metal anthem about waiting in line that we have ever heard!!

Another great release from these stalwarts of traditional British heavy metal, and if you’ve heard any of the recent Saxon releases you will know what you’re getting!!




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