YEAR RELEASED: 1979
CHART ACTION: None
SINGLES: Big Teaser, Back to the Wall
OTHER SONGS YOU MAY KNOW: If you’re a NWOBHM junkie, maybe
LINEUP: Biff Byford, Graham Oliver, Paul Quinn, Steve Dawson, Pete Gill
WHAT’S IT ALL ABOUT: First album from British heavy metal band finds them finding their way in the studio.
SOME WORDS, PHRASES AND CLAUSES ABOUT THIS RECORD: Debut albums are sometimes tentative first steps that only show glimmers of what the band would become. The debut from Saxon is one such album.
While there’s plenty of decent riffs, and rockin’ out, the band, the label, the producer, everyone was at a crossroads on where they’d ultimately wind up. There’s a dash of prog, some glam and some reg’lar 70’s metal. It’s all a stew, which no doubt was a product of their influences at the time.
However, this is still a decent metal album. Those who know later Saxon may be puzzled at a few tracks, but there’s still enough here to recognize this as Saxon, and see this as a first step toward what they’d become to UK metal heads.
NOTES & MINUTIAE: Their original name was “Son of a Bitch”
IS THERE A DELUXE VERSION: Yes, demos and BBC sessions
GRADE: B-: It’s not the perfect metal album, but it’s a decent precursor to NWOBHM.