Oct 102013

Portland, a town of many faces and weirdness to say the least, is also a huge music town that knows Rock. You could be sure when British heavy metal legends Saxon announced a North American Tour with Fozzy and Halcyon Way, the Denim and Leather warriors would show up. Of all the year’s of Metal dedication, this would be Saxon’s first trip back to the Portland since 1984, when most of the members were 17.   Wow have things changed…or have they?

Denim and Leather Brought us all together It was you that set the spirit free! (*bad phone pic)

Denim and Leather
Brought us all together
It was you that set the spirit free! (*bad phone pic)

Following Halcyon Way and Fozzy (featuring WWF star Chris Jerico and Stuck Mojo Axeman Rich Ward) fog filled the stage for the Legendary Saxon to ride the thunder. Opening the show with the title track from 2013 release “Sacrifice” and 1984 release “The Power and the Glory” the packed Alhambra Theatre sizzled with fire and glory! Since it was the last night of the U.S. tour before traveling to Vancouver, the band threw a curve ball and for the first time of the tour played “I’ve Got to Rock (To Stay Alive)“.  Biff Byford lead vocalist and Metal team Captain asked “Does this Town Know how to Rock?” and that’s when we had our first NWOBHM pit! Yes there’s a difference in pits and we can go over that another time when legends aren’t amongst us.

Saxon, hailing from the UK with a catalog of albums and massive list of hits, continued to blister Portland with classics “The Eagle Has Landed“,” Motorcycle Man“, “Dallas 1pm”, “Denium & Leather”, and “Wheels Of Steel”! Of course, after playing almost a full two hour set, what’s one more tune and that leaves the one and only “Crusader” for the encore.  Biff Byford, full of elegance, class, and venom was able to sum up almost 40 years worth in a single sentence, “100% Rock N Roll, that’s what we do and we do it every night“. It’s nights like this that holding your horns in the air means something and the Metal community gets it. Judging by the band Saxon, their music, and the Portland Rockers, no not much has changed at all.

I appreciate Saxon finally making it back to Portland and if I go by history, I’ll see you guys again in 2042! You better believe I’ll still be Rocking, see you there.

Urb Thrasher

Legendary Biff Byford serenades the crowd! (*bad phone pic)

Legendary Biff Byford serenades the crowd! (*bad phone pic)

Set List

  1. Sacrifice
  2. Power & The Glory
  3. Night Of the Wolf
  4. I’ve Got to Rock (To Stay Alive)
  5. This Town Rocks
  6. Made In Belefast
  7. Heavy Metal Thunder
  8. The Eagle Has Landed
  9. Dogs Of War
  10. Motorcycle Man
  11. Guardians of the Tomb
  12. Dallas 1pm
  13. Never Surrender
  14. Wheels Of Terror
  15. 747 (Strangers In the Night)
  16. Denium & Leather
  17. Wheels Of Steel
  18. Crusader
  • Biff Byford: Vocals
  • Doug Scarratt: Guitars
  • Paul Quinn: Guitars
  • Nibs Carter: Bass
  • Nigel Glockler: Drums