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ConcertsSaxon Return to New York on 5/19/2009 at BB Kings

Posted on Sunday, June 21 2009 @ 08:29:55 CDT by Pete Pardo
Heavy Metal

It had been, oh, 27 years since I had last seen the mighty British heavy metal band Saxon in a live setting, back at the old Palladium here in New York City, opening up for Triumph, in what was a spectacular concert at a venue that no longer is a home to rock concerts. Fast forward to 2009, and Saxon are making a return to the States for their first tour in quite some time, labeled 'The Battalions of Steel World Tour 2009' in support of their recent release Into the Labyrinth. Founding members Biff Byford, Paul Quinn, along with longtime drummer Nigel Glockler, guitarist Doug Scarratt, and bass player Nibbs Carter, put together a stellar set list in front of a packed house of hungry metal fans starving for some NWOBHM sounds. Sea of Tranquility Publisher Peter Pardo was on hand, and reports in with events from the show.

Having taken a few months off from live events, this concert was to be my 're-introduction' so to speak back into the world of live music, and it was quite welcome, not just to be back in the groove and checking out a show, but to once again see this band for the first time in many, many years. Saxon took to the stage like conquering heroes, in front of a packed to the gills contingent at the BB King Blues Club in New York City's Times Square. The band's newest release Into the Labyrinth was another fine addition to their already strong back catalog, and the band came out in support of this CD as well as to remind us just how many classic metal songs they've crafted over the years. Opening up with "Battalions of Steel" from the new album, and sprinkling in other tunes like "Demon Sweeney Todd", "The Letter", "Valley of the Kings", "Live to Rock", and "Hellcat", the band did this in a smart way by not stringing all the newer tunes together, but wrapping them around plenty of classics, which seemed to really work as the crowd was into them all. And classics they did play, including the mighty "Heavy Metal Thunder", "Strong Arm of the Law", "Power and the Glory", and many others.

Lead singer Biff Byford is a real freak of nature-this guy can still flat out sing his ass off, and he sounds just as good now as he did nearly 30 years ago. Founding guitarist Paul Quinn is still by his side, and his meaty tone is ever present in staples such as "The Eagle Has Landed", "Dallas 1PM", the raging "20,000 Feet", and of course the legendary "Wheels of Steel", "Denim and Leather", "Motorcycle Man", "Crusader", and the closing "Princess of the Night", one of my personal favorites. Quinn and Scarratt made a formidable guitar team, and the rhythm was anchored by drummer Glockler and bassist Carter. No one left the venue disappointed at the end of this evening, as the band played just about every song you'd want to hear, and with the energy of a band half their ages. Let's face it, the guys in Saxon are no spring chickens, but they could have taught many a younger act a thing or two about how to please a crowd and deliver the goods on this night.

The Eagle Has Landed indeed!

Pete Pardo

Set List
Battalions Of Steel
Heavy Metal Thunder
Demon Sweeney Todd
Strong Arm Of The Law
Power And The Glory
The Letter
Valley Of The Kings
The Eagle Has Landed
And The Bands Played On
Dallas 1 PM
20,000 Ft
Wheels Of Steel
Live To Rock
Motorcycle Man
Encore 2:
Never Surrender
747 (Strangers In The Night)
Denim And Leather
Princess Of The Night

Hits: 2029

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