Thunderbolt (Saxon album)
Thunderbolt is the twenty-second studio album by British heavy metal band Saxon, released on 2 February 2018. On 14 September 2016, the band revealed they had begun working on a new album through their Facebook account. A month frontman Biff Byford revealed they had written a song dedicated to Motörhead called "They Played Rock n Roll", following the death of frontman Lemmy on 28 December 2015, which ended the band's 40-year history; the song is stylistically similar and referenced their touring companionship on the 1979/1980 "Bomber" tour. In an interview alongside Airbourne frontman Joel O'Keeffe at 2017's Metal Hammer Golden Gods Awards, Byford confirmed that the album's title would be Thunderbolt and that the inspiration for it came from the gods of Greek mythology. Further details were revealed on various stops on their autumn tour of the Canada. In an interview at their Newton, New Jersey show on 22 September, he revealed that he'd finished recording his vocals on 20 September. In an interview at their Montreal, Canada show on 4 October, Byford revealed that long-time producer Andy Sneap had finished mixing the album the previous day and mentioned a release date of 21 January 2018.
On 7 November 2017, the band confirmed the title and revealed the release date of 2 February 2018, track list, artwork and a short UK/European tour alongside Diamond Head, with Magnum and Rock Goddess supporting on select UK dates. On 30 November 2017, the new video "Thunderbolt" was released. On 19 September 2018, the "Predator" video was released. All music composed by Doug Scarratt, Nigel Glockler, Paul Quinn, Nibbs Carter. Biff Byford – vocals Paul Quinn – guitars Doug Scarratt – guitars Nibbs Carter – bass Nigel Glockler – drumsAdditional MusiciansSeb Byford – backing vocals on "Thunderbolt" and "Speed Merchants" Tom Witts – backing vocals on "Thunderbolt" and "Speed Merchants" Caleb Quaye – backing vocals on "Thunderbolt" and "Speed Merchants" Corvin Bahn – keyboards on "Nosferatu" Johan Hegg – harsh vocals on "Predator"ProductionBilly Lee – photography Steph Byford – artwork Gestaltungskommando Buntmetall – layout, design Paul Raymond Gregory – cover art Andy Sneap – producer, mixing
Peter Rodney "Biff" Byford is an English singer best known as the lead singer of the heavy metal band Saxon. Byford sang and played bass with a band called Coast from around 1973 to 1976 along with drummer Al Dodd and future Saxon guitarist Paul Quinn, when he formed Saxon with guitarists Graham Oliver and Paul Quinn, bassist Steve Dawson and drummer Pete Gill; the band was called Son of a Bitch, but changed to Saxon in 1978. They released their self-titled debut album in 1979, became part of what was known as the new wave of British heavy metal, which included bands like Iron Maiden and Judas Priest; the band had commercial success as well, charting eight UK Top 40 albums and five Top 40 singles between 1980 and 1986. At the end of the 1980s, the band declined in popularity, Oliver and Dawson formed a new band with the same name, though they were forced to change it to Oliver/Dawson Saxon. Saxon maintained a recording and touring career centred on Germany for much of the 1990s, before coming back into broader attention with 2007's The Inner Sanctum.
In April 2007, Byford released his autobiography, entitled Never Surrender after the Saxon song of the same name. Gigwise.com reported on 18 January 2010 that Byford was launching a campaign to have Britons declare heavy metal as their religion in the United Kingdom Census 2011, inspired by the Jedi census phenomenon. With Saxon with Air PavilionKaizoku – vocals on "She's Hot Stuff"with FastwayBad Bad Girls with Freedom CallTaragon – narration on "Tears of Taragon"with DestructionInventor of Evil – vocals on "The Alliance of Hellhoundz"with HelloweenGambling with the Devil – spoken word on "Crack the Riddle" 7 Sinners – spoken word on'Who is Mr. Madman?'with DoroCelebrate – The Night of the Warlock – vocals on "Celebrate" with AvantasiaThe Mystery of Time with The Scintilla ProjectThe Hybrid Never Surrender, 2007 Official Biff Byford Facebook Page Never Surrender Google Books entry Biff Byford at imdb.com
Wheels of Steel
Wheels of Steel is the second studio album by the English heavy metal band Saxon. It was released in 1980 and reached Gold status in the UK. "747" is about a power cut that forced planes in New York to remain in ascent in 1965 with the power outage provoking a Scandinavian flight to detour to Kennedy airport in the dark. The title track is featured in the video games Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City and Brütal Legend, it has been covered by L. A. Guns on their album Rips the Covers Off and bears a strong resemblance to the outro riff of "Rock'n' Roll Doctor" by Black Sabbath, although according to guitarist Graham Oliver the song was inspired by the Ted Nugent song "Cat Scratch Fever"; the album received positive reviews by critics and is today regarded as being a classic metal album helping to define the genre. Eduardo Rivadavia of AllMusic lists the album as "topping the heap of essential Saxon albums, pretty much hand in hand with its immediate successors, Strong Arm of the Law and Denim and Leather... setting the template for the band's most successful efforts".
Canadian reviewer Martin Popoff regards Wheels of Steel as a "qualified classic" and "one of two or three of building blocks". Sputnikmusic's Mike Stagno praises "the solid, consistent rhythms that produce the riffy, yet accessible tunes" and Biff Byford's "powerful singing", which make Wheels of Steel "perhaps not one of metal's best albums", but "still a worthwhile album."The album went on to achieve Gold status in the UK. It was their first album to enter the UK Albums Chart, peaking at #5, is their highest-charting album in the UK Albums Chart to date. All tracks written by Biff Byford, Paul Quinn, Graham Oliver, Steve Dawson and Pete Gill.2009 remaster bonus tracks 13-17 recorded live at Donington, 1980. SaxonBiff Byford - vocals Graham Oliver - guitar Paul Quinn - guitar Steve Dawson - bass guitar Pete Gill - drumsProductionPete Hinton - producer Will Reid Dick - engineer
A record producer or music producer oversees and manages the sound recording and production of a band or performer's music, which may range from recording one song to recording a lengthy concept album. A producer has varying roles during the recording process, they may gather musical ideas for the project, collaborate with the artists to select cover tunes or original songs by the artist/group, work with artists and help them to improve their songs, lyrics or arrangements. A producer may also: Select session musicians to play rhythm section accompaniment parts or solos Co-write Propose changes to the song arrangements Coach the singers and musicians in the studioThe producer supervises the entire process from preproduction, through to the sound recording and mixing stages, and, in some cases, all the way to the audio mastering stage; the producer may perform these roles themselves, or help select the engineer, provide suggestions to the engineer. The producer may pay session musicians and engineers and ensure that the entire project is completed within the record label's budget.
A record producer or music producer has a broad role in overseeing and managing the recording and production of a band or performer's music. A producer has many roles that may include, but are not limited to, gathering ideas for the project, composing the music for the project, selecting songs or session musicians, proposing changes to the song arrangements, coaching the artist and musicians in the studio, controlling the recording sessions, supervising the entire process through audio mixing and, in some cases, to the audio mastering stage. Producers often take on a wider entrepreneurial role, with responsibility for the budget, schedules and negotiations. Writer Chris Deville explains it, "Sometimes a producer functions like a creative consultant — someone who helps a band achieve a certain aesthetic, or who comes up with the perfect violin part to complement the vocal melody, or who insists that a chorus should be a bridge. Other times a producer will build a complete piece of music from the ground up and present the finished product to a vocalist, like Metro Boomin supplying Future with readymade beats or Jack Antonoff letting Taylor Swift add lyrics and melody to an otherwise-finished “Out Of The Woods.”The artist of an album may not be a record producer or music producer for his/her album.
While both contribute creatively, the official credit of "record producer" may depend on the record contract. Christina Aguilera, for example, did not receive record producer credits until many albums into her career. In the 2010s, the producer role is sometimes divided among up to three different individuals: executive producer, vocal producer and music producer. An executive producer oversees project finances, a vocal producers oversees the vocal production, a music producer oversees the creative process of recording and mixings; the music producer is often a competent arranger, musician or songwriter who can bring fresh ideas to a project. As well as making any songwriting and arrangement adjustments, the producer selects and/or collaborates with the mixing engineer, who takes the raw recorded tracks and edits and modifies them with hardware and software tools to create a stereo or surround sound "mix" of all the individual voices sounds and instruments, in turn given further adjustment by a mastering engineer for the various distribution media.
The producer oversees the recording engineer who concentrates on the technical aspects of recording. Noted producer Phil Ek described his role as "the person who creatively guides or directs the process of making a record", like a director would a movie. Indeed, in Bollywood music, the designation is music director; the music producer's job is to create and mold a piece of music. The scope of responsibility may be one or two songs or an artist's entire album – in which case the producer will develop an overall vision for the album and how the various songs may interrelate. At the beginning of record industry, the producer role was technically limited to record, in one shot, artists performing live; the immediate predecessors to record producers were the artists and repertoire executives of the late 1920s and 1930s who oversaw the "pop" product and led session orchestras. That was the case of Ben Selvin at Columbia Records, Nathaniel Shilkret at Victor Records and Bob Haring at Brunswick Records.
By the end of the 1930s, the first professional recording studios not owned by the major companies were established separating the roles of A&R man and producer, although it wouldn't be until the late 1940s when the term "producer" became used in the industry. The role of producers changed progressively over the 1960s due to technology; the development of multitrack recording caused a major change in the recording process. Before multitracking, all the elements of a song had to be performed simultaneously. All of these singers and musicians had to be assembled in a large studio where the performance was recorded. With multitrack recording, the "bed tracks" (rhythm section accompaniment parts such as the bassline and rhythm guitar could be recorded first, the vocals and solos could be added using as many "takes" as necessary, it was no longer necessary to get all the players in the studio at the same time. A pop band could record their backing tracks one week, a horn section could be brought in a week to add horn shots and punches, a string section could be brought in a week after that.
Multitrack recording had another pro
Solid Ball of Rock
Solid Ball of Rock is the tenth studio album by heavy metal band Saxon released in 1991. Five of its 11 tracks were written by new bassist Nibbs Carter. "For our audience – and without an audience there is no band – our focus returned on Solid Ball of Rock…" noted singer Biff Byford. "Since we've been right on it." SaxonBiff Byford – vocals, engineer Graham Oliver – guitar Paul Quinn – guitar Nibbs Carter – bass guitar Nigel Glockler – drumsProductionKalle Trapp — producer, engineer
Power & the Glory
Power & the Glory is the fifth studio album by heavy metal band Saxon released in 1983. The album sold over 1.5 million copies worldwide. This is the first Saxon studio album with new drummer Nigel Glockler and was recorded in Atlanta, Georgia in the fall of 1982; the album peaked at #15 in the UK Albums Chart. It reached No.1 in the Metal charts in Sweden, Norway and Germany selling over 1.5 million copies worldwide. It was their first album to enter the Billboard 200 in the US, peaking at #155. A retrospective AllMusic review by Eduardo Rivadavia gave the album three out of five stars. Rivadavia criticised the mixing, saying that the album "sounds as though it was recorded in a tin can, albeit a very large tin can" eliminating the "big, in-your-face, gritty" sound heard on the band's past albums, he criticised the material itself, saying that "despite a few sparks generated by "Redline," "Warrior," and the proto-thrashing "This Town Rocks," only the anthemic title track showed enough staying power to earn a frequent slot in Saxon's live repertoire".
Canadian journalist Martin Popoff writes quite the opposite and considers Power & the Glory Saxon's best album, praising the production and the contribution of "new ass-kicking drummer Nigel Glockler" to "working a metal magic, the embodiment of the NWOBHM's ideals now made real."In 2005, Power & the Glory was ranked number 376 in Rock Hard magazine's book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time. All tracks written by Paul Quinn, Graham Oliver, Steve Dawson and Nigel Glockler. "Power and the Glory" was released as a single in April 1983. It reached number 32 on the UK Singles Chart; the song is lyrics relating to war and battles. A music video was made for the song with band members running through a castle with dead dolls. Biff Byford - vocals Graham Oliver - guitar Paul Quinn - guitar Steve Dawson - bass guitar Nigel Glockler - drumsProductionJeff Glixman - producer Jeff Glixman - engineer Cheryl Bordagary - engineer Les Horn - engineer Axis Sound Studio, Atlanta - recording and mixing location
Saxon are an English heavy metal band formed in 1977, in Barnsley. As one of the leaders of the new wave of British heavy metal, they had eight UK Top 40 albums in the 1980s including four UK Top 10 albums and two Top 5 albums; the band had numerous singles in the UK Singles Chart and chart success all over Europe and Japan, as well as success in the United States. During the 1980s, Saxon established themselves as one of Europe's greatest metal acts; the band tour and have sold more than 23 million albums worldwide. They are considered one of the classic metal acts, have influenced a number of bands such as Metallica, Slayer, Testament, Overkill, Mötley Crüe, Helloween, Running Wild, Metal Church, Armored Saint, Dream Theater, Skid Row, Celtic Frost, King Diamond and Death Angel. Saxon began with a lineup formed by former Coast members Peter "Biff" Byford on vocals, Paul Quinn and former Sob member Graham Oliver on guitars, Steve "Dobby" Dawson on bass; the band changed their name to Saxon shortly afterwards.
They started out by gaining support slots on tour with more established bands such as Motörhead. In 1979, the band signed to the French record label Carrere run by Freddy Cannon in the UK and released their eponymous debut album. In 1980, the band's follow-up album Wheels of Steel, was released and charted at #5 in the UK, it spawned two hit singles: the title track, the crowd favourite "747". The album provided the band with success and they began a series of long-lasting tours across the UK. On 16 August, Saxon appeared at the first Monsters of Rock Festival where they received a positive reception from the crowd; the band's set was recorded but was not released until 2000. In April, Saxon made the first of many appearances on Top of the Pops, where they performed the hit single "Wheels of Steel". Strong Arm of the Law was released in the year, charting at #11 in the UK, it is considered by many fans to be their best album, it helped to keep the band's popularity increasing. Two singles were released from this album: the title track and Dallas 1PM, the latter written about the assassination of U.
S. President John F. Kennedy. Sold out tours of Europe and the UK followed as the album charted in several European countries; the band had gained great success in Japan where the single Motorcycle Man had stayed in the charts for 6 months. In 1981, the band released their fourth album Denim And Leather which they dedicated to their fan base; the album is still popular today and the title track "Denim And Leather" is regarded as a metal anthem. The album featured many other fan favourites such as "Princess of the Night", "Never Surrender" and "And the Bands Played On" which were all UK Top 20 hits. Denim And Leather followed its predecessor's success and went Gold in several European countries including the UK. By this time the band was seen as the leaders of the NWOBHM movement with future greats Iron Maiden and Def Leppard following close behind. Just as the band was about to embark on a long tour to follow the success of Denim And Leather, drummer Pete Gill left the band after injuring his hand.
The band had to replace him with Nigel Glockler of Toyah, who had to learn the entire set within a day and a half just before the tour was about to begin. Glockler is still with the band today. A series of headlining tours around the UK and a sold out tour in Europe with support act Ozzy Osbourne, resulted in The Eagle Has Landed. Planned as a double live album, the record company decided to release it as a single live album despite protests from the band; the Eagle Has Landed is still regarded. Saxon played the 1982 Monsters Of Rock Festival again and became the first band to appear there twice; as the NWOBHM movement began to fade, 1983's Power & the Glory, their highest selling album to date, saw Saxon cement themselves as the leading metal act in Europe along with Iron Maiden and Judas Priest. The "Power and Glory Tour" was an arena tour that began in Europe, was a huge success; the US leg of the tour with support act Accept proved to be successful and Saxon found themselves becoming a major act in the US as the album, in its first week of release, sold more than 15,000 copies in Los Angeles alone.
The emerging glam metal scene in America would however prevent the band's conquest of the American market, as the genre was increasing in mainstream popularity. The cover art of the album was produced by Hollywood film director Ridley Scott. In late 1983 Saxon left Carrere. Saxon signed with EMI Records with their first release on the label being Crusader. Though still heavy, critics felt the album had a more commercial sound, fans began to wonder what direction the band was taking. Despite its commercial sound, the title track became a fan favourite; the album sold over 2 million copies and the 1984 world tour "The World Crusade" was a success both in Europe and America. In the US they had Mötley Crüe and Krokus as support for many shows of the tour as the band spent one year on the road. By this time the band was considered as headliners for 1984's Monsters of Rock at Donington, but scheduling issues and record label disputes kept the band from participating. With the release of Innocence Is No Excuse in 1985, the band continued to take a more commercial direction and this created a division amongst fans as the band's once raw, heavy sound had been watered down to gain more attraction to the large US market.
The album has, gained more appreciation both from fans and critics as time has passed since its initial release. A huge sold out world tour in support of the album followed, but tensions