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Saxon - Unplugged And Strung Up

Published November 18 2013

=Staff's pick

Stallions Of The Highway (Remix)
Crusader (Orchestrated Version)
Battle Cry
The Eagle Has Landed (Orchestrated Version)
Red Star Falling (Orchestrated Version)*
Broken Heroes (Orchestrated Version)
Call To Arms (Orchestrated Version)
Militia Guard
Forever Free (Re-recorded Version)
Just Let Me Rock (Re-recorded Version)
Frozen Rainbow (Acoustic Version)
Iron Wheels (Live Acoustic Version)
Requiem (We Will Remember) (Acoustic Version)
Coming Home

Genre Heavy Metal
Biff Byford
Tracks 14
Paul Quinn
Running time 68 Min.
Doug Scarratt
Label UDR
Nibbs Carter
Release 18 November 2013
Nigel Glockler
Country England
Producer Andy Sneap
Similar artists ---

Deep into Saxon's career, the band has decided to release an album consisting remixes, orchestrated, acoustic and re-recorded versions of mainly classic songs and also a few songs in different versions that later ended up as bonus tracks. For what reason I really can't see, but I don't think that Saxon lacks of judgment and they absolutely know that this won't sell that many copies and most likely this is just something that the band enjoyed doing.

This is mainly something for the die-hard followers of course, as I think none of these remakes beat the original versions. Nor have they chosen the band's absolute better tracks, since a lot of them were re-recorded on 2002's Heavy Metal Thunder album. Although many of them still are near outstanding in their purity, they now can't pull through and kick major ass.

The remix of Stallions Of The Highway sounds strange and the re-recorded versions of Forever Free and Just Let Me Rock must have been recorded in a giant can filled to one third with soda. I am also almost never fond of metal songs getting orchestral elements added. Crusader and Broken Heroes sounds just wrong and The Eagle Has Landed comes off with a warning, but doesn't pass the test properly. The only track with those elements that actually sets my emotions on fire is Red Star Falling that originally is a bombastic track and therefore somewhat comes out as the winner.

The acoustic elements are a bit special, but the tracks sound too clean and much of the good stuff is lost in translation, although the live version of Iron Wheels can't be included in this illustration. I believe I kind of like the songs because I have listened to the real deal hundreds of times before and know most of them really well. For the newcomer I would definitely recommend the original versions instead. Still it's somewhat fun with a compilation album that doesn't focus on the most well-known songs, but this release is something you check out a few times and later lay it to rest.

See also review of: Thunderbolt , Battering Ram , Warriors Of The Road - The Saxon Chronicles Part II , St. George's Day Sacrifice - Live In Manchester , Sacrifice , Heavy Metal Thunder: Live , Into The Labyrinth , Lionheart , Heavy Metal Thunder: Live DVD , The Saxon Chronicles








4 chalices of 10 - Tobbe

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