Tuesday, June 16, 2020

SAXON LIVE LONDON 1988 - Review by Javier Barba Vallejo,

Today I share this video of Saxon that I had never seen and with which I have freaked out a lot, from the publication of Jose Luis Rubio Sanchez, of what setting and with what strength they presented and defended live in those times when their popularity was low, in works like Rock The Nations or Destiny.
Years of tours in which they did not even approach this territory.
And so I take the opportunity to put a parade of mine about the time of the band's most decline.
It is from the Destiny tour (1988) when Saxon had lost part of its regular members original bassist and founder Steve Dawson and drummer Nigel Glockler.
Dawson had left the group in 86 before the recording of Rock The Nations, in which the song Waiting For The Night is still composed by the other members, on the recording Biff played the bass tracks throughout the album, ( At the beginning, Byford was a bassist, but given his good connection with the public and his voice, he ended up exclusively as a singer), although his substitute Paul Johnson was already in the photos on the album and did not compose any song.
Personally and as a staunch fan, I think Rock The Nations is the worst album by far from what Saxon has released in his career, even years later it is an album that I can find neither head nor foot, of which in studio only except for the song that gives you a title and little else .....
Steve Dawson after his departure from Saxon set up the USI band that had the drummer Nigel Durham and they recorded the album Pandemonium Circus.
Due to the pressures of the Emi record label for the recording of a new album, the orientation of the new sound of the group to please the American market, Nigel Glockler decides to leave Saxon to try the new Steve Howie GTR project.
Being replaced in Saxon by Nigel Durham, for the recording of Destiny in 88.
And in this great album, Paul Johnson enters as a composer.
In my opinion, Destiny is an album of excess commercial sound giving a turn (or five !!!) of the nut more following the trend that their previous albums already had, disconnected from the Saxon sound wave of the early 80s, but a Great and great Hard Rock album, they even had a sixth component as a guest musician on the entire album for keyboards Steven Lawes-Clifford.
The decline in success in those years was due to the fact that Saxon in the late 1970s when the N.W.B.O.H.M. They signed with record labels to the race of "fool the last" Saxon signed too many records (7) with Carrere a very small French record company recently created by Claude Carrrere that could not cover large international distributions, as if they did Maiden With EMI or Leppard with Vertigo .
By the time they ended their contract with Carrere after the publication of Crusader and signed the long-awaited contract with EMI, Saxon had already begun their marketing of sound to cover the Yankee market since Power And The Glory (1983), EMI as a multinational ate them and directed them His career as he pleased, leaving aside artistic creativity in favor of the dollar and a forced success in America that did not come.
Although Saxon knew how to react by abandoning EMI and recording with record companies such as Virgin Esdel, Silver Lining Music and thus with them maintaining full control of their artistic career and their music in a slow and gradual recovery of their deserved success although they are an underrated band that should be in a much higher status in Heavy Metal.
Because in this world not everything is art and passion, the financial and contractual part also matters a lot.
Anyway they are great musicians, great people, they have dared with sound changes, they have never stopped fighting and they are among the best classic Heavy Metal bands ....... for me for the better !!!


Review by Javier Barba Vallejo

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