Saxon – “St. George’s Day – Live In Manchester” (UDR / ADA)
St George is the patron saint of England whose national day is seen as the most English of all days. NWOBHM legends Saxon have traditionally played a concert on this day in England to commemorate both it’s people and their heritage, choosing Manchester – deep in the heart of the nation – to record this double album. I have to simply wonder if the sheer number of English George crosses would’ve outshone the light show given how charged the whole affair is, undoubtedly steeped in national reverence that could no better be matched musically than by these sons of England. From the passionate ‘Crusader’ to the defiant ‘Never Surrender’, from the glorious ‘Power And The Glory’ to the raucously proud ‘Denim N Leather’, Saxon show the patriotic fervor of the crowd, whose vocal chords musta been shredded after this given how loud they sang – and on damn near every one of the 20 songs! Although traditionally seen as a reserved people, Saxon have reached into the hearts and souls of the English and unleashed the lion in them all on what must be their best live album to date and a true night to remember. Northern British steel at its best, Saxon’s salt of the earth example is one that should be followed by our corrupt politicians and our witless so called ‘betters’ as the nation faces an uncertain future in Europe. Whatever happens, the bond between the band and their fans remains true, forged in the fires of the 70s and remaining unwavering over the last 4 decades – true Britannia!