Review: Saxon- Thunderbolt

\"\"NWOBHM all-stars Saxon have been putting out something new pretty consistently now for over 35 years and one thing has never changed and that’s consistency. For over 35 years they have stayed at the forefront of heavy metal and one thing have never changed. That’s the quality you have come to expect from them has never wavered. The lineup has remained basically the same too. It’s always been Biff Byford on vocals and Paul Quinn on guitars. Toss into the mix guitarist Doug Scarratt, bassist Libbs Carter and drummer Nigel Glockler who have been with the band about 20 years each and you really have something special. So it should come as no surprise that their newest effort- Thunderbolt continues their endeavors. The album starts with the rather ominous “Olympus Rising”. It sets the tone for what is yet to come; Then from out of nowhere Biff’s voice hits you like a “Thunderbolt” and is just as lethal. “The Secret Of Flight” brilliantly shows just how remarkable the guitar work really is. It’s top notch back and forth. “Nosferatu (The Vampire’s Waltz)” tells an undead tale that’s sure to steal your soul, while “They Played Rock ‘N’ Roll” is a straight up with no chaser in your face declaration. The added voice of Johan Hegg gives “Predator” a whole different vibe unto its own. Then there’s the slow guitar groove of “Sons Of Odin,” which is quite simply put massive. Like a title wave, it consumes everything in its path. “Sniper” is a kill shot away. It hits hard and fast leaving you wondering what the hell just happened. “A Wizard’s Tale” lets Byford spin a little tale of magic and mythical creatures. ‘Speed Merchants” let’s the twin guitar attack of Quinn & Scarratt set the pace, while “Roadie’s Song” tells the story of the unsung heroes of a rock n roll show. Here’s the bottom line- 22 albums into their career and Saxon is still getting better and better with each and every release. Rating: 8.5/10 -Eric Hunker