Witching Metal Webzine

Witching Metal Webzine

Friday, August 16, 2013

Interview with Biff Byford from Saxon

Some may remember the review I posted about the Dogs of War re-release. Well, I actually got a chance to shoot an e-mail with some questions for Biff.

First off, thanks for taking the time to do this.
Saxon has released a plethora of albums over the years, including classics like Wheels of SteelStrong Arm of the Law, and Denim and Leather.You guys have been really prolific, releasing heavy metal albums even in the Nineties when metal was passé. What was the decision to re-releaseDogs of War?

I think it is a strong album and it was our first move back to a heavier style.

The album marks for a change of direction, going from over the top to a heavier approach. From then on, it was like you guys got heavier and heavier. It still has that classic Saxon sound to it though, the NWOBHM feel. Was this just something that came naturally at the time?

The thing is, I took control of the direction of our music; from then on and we were able to keep the band on a clearer path 

Looking back, how do you feel about the album? 

I think the album has a great feel. Half metal, half hard rock

By the mid-Nineties, many of the big eighties bands had abandoned ship when grunge had taken over. Was that a bit of a wake up call? Did it affect the way you thought about writing?

No, not really. I think grunge was about attitude and a more organic sound, and let's face it, some great bands came out of that movement. Different generations are gonna find their music. 

Any favorite songs from the album? What about songs that make you cringe every time you think about it? 

Don't really have cringe moment on this album. I like "Dogs of War," it was written about the war in Sarajevo.

What do you remember from recording the album? 

Well, it was a bit stressful as is marked the fall of Graham out of the band. His solos were replaced on the album by the manager/producer, for whatever reason

Is there a plan for reissues of other albums? What’s in the future of Saxon? I’ll lend you a crystal ball if you need it. 

The thing is with all reissues, if someone wants to do it there has to be a market. At the moment, Saxon have a high profile so I suppose the answer is: yes

Thanks for your time, this was a real pleasure! Congratulations on making stellar albums. Keep it heavy! 

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