Saxon add fun to "these dark times" with lively covers collection Inspirations

NWOBHM veterans Saxon play us some favourite tunes on Inspirations

Saxon: Inspirations
(Image: © Militia Guard)

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Lord knows we’ve all needed to make our own escapist entertainment over the past year, and that’s surely been particularly true for musicians confined to barracks while touring is off the agenda. So who could blame Saxon for choosing to follow up 2018’s originals collection Thunderbolt with a covers album, promising “some fun in these dark times”?

“It was interesting to see what my voice could do,” Biff Byford told Classic Rock about some of the less obviously Saxon-esque tracks chosen, such as the Rolling Stones Paint It, Black, on which his lower register gets a relatively rare airing, and there is something curious about the dreamy take on The KinksSee My Friends

For the most part, though, Biff and co. are clearly at their best on heavier home territory. Motorhead’s Bomber is tackled with gleeful, speeding abandon, and AC/DC’s Problem Child is a thumping, chant-along delight.  

An essential purchase within the Saxon canon? Possibly not. Worth a hard-rocking half-hour of your time? Definitely.

Johnny Sharp

Johnny is a regular contributor to Prog and Classic Rock magazines, both online and in print. Johnny is a highly experienced and versatile music writer whose tastes range from prog and hard rock to R’n’B, funk, folk and blues. He has written about music professionally for 30 years, surviving the Britpop wars at the NME in the 90s (under the hard-to-shake teenage nickname Johnny Cigarettes) before branching out to newspapers such as The Guardian and The Independent and magazines such as Uncut, Record Collector and, of course, Prog and Classic Rock