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And the Band Played On - Rejoice!,
This review is from: Into The Labyrinth (Audio CD)
Hark; I hear the sound of distant Gregorian chants, the tolling of a bell, a call to ride valiantly into battle - swords held high...Rejoice...it must be a new Saxon album! And indeed it is. Yes, Saxon are back once more, with another incredibly strong album to add to their list of recent releases. It's not as full on heavy metal as Lionheart was, and it's not as Euro-power metal as Inner Sanctum, it's kind of somewhere in between. The tracks flit to an extent between the two camps. Where you'll have a full on track like Sweeney Todd, it'll be followed by the more anthemic Valley of the Kings. Crime of Passion is packed with thrashy riffs, and then comes the power metal of Voice. To my mind, the mix works really well. Then there's a track like Slow Lane Blues which must be a new classic in the making. Or the closing Coming Home which is miles better than I ever hoped to imagine. I'm not a fan of bands re-recording their own material, and Coming Home was only released in it's own right a few years ago. But the guitars on this track are amazing. In fact, the level of musicianship throughout this album is absolutely top drawer.
Will this album pull in any new fans? Maybe not. But if you've been a fan in the past, and let Saxon pass you by for the last decade or so, then this is a brilliant introduction to the sort of thing you've been missing.