I shit you not! OK, so this might not be the place to have a fair debate, afterall, we are all pretty biased! But lets look at it objectively. Are Saxon the heavy metal kings that we think they are? Or are they just the poor mans joke band of the metal world? Have they just been unlucky, or did they bring the bad luck on themselves? Saxon took a chance in trying to break America in the 1980's and it back fired on them. Not only did they not make it in the US of A, but it cost them big time in Britain. The new direction and the new songs had people turning away in their thousands. Def Leppard tried exactly the same thing but made it, Saxon failed. To be honest I'm not sure why they failed, those mid '80 albums have got many a fine tune on them that the Americans should have lapped up. Maybe it was all down to poor promotion and management (now where have we heard that before!). Maybe you can see why those albums wern't Britains cup of tea, but surely it should have been America's coffee? But let's not forget that Saxon wern't the only band who went 'hair metal' and donned some rather silly outfits, that was the way a large slice of metal was going. Just look at the footage of Judas Priest of the time, and their American hair do's! Saxon have regained a lot more respect over the last few years, but there is no doubt that they are not given the respect that they deserve. Afterall, out of all the big hitters of 1980's that are still going - Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Motorhead, Def Leppard, Saxon are probably the only one of those bands that are in better form now, both live and in the studio. With both Motorhead and Def Leppard struggling to come up with half a dozen decent songs between them, let alone putting out solid albums. So why are Saxon playing smaller venues than those two bands? Saxon haven't put a foot wrong in the last 10 years, so why arn't they given the respect that they deserve? Especially from the press, but even from metal fans in this country. Maybe those fans don't know what they are missing, what with stations like Planet Rock never playing a Saxon song that has been recorded after 1984. Because I'm sure if more people heard the quality albums Saxon have put out in the last 10 years, then Saxon would be back at the Hammersmith where they belong.