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Lionheart Review

Discussion in 'Saxon' started by heavycelli, Dec 31, 2004.

  1. heavycelli

    heavycelli Member

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    Well I thought it was a good idea to place my review of Lionheart on the last day of the year. I enjoyed it a lot.. I had a nice view over the forest next to me in which a nice sommer –winter-wende fire burned for 12 days, to give the sun nescecairy heath.. so the sun gets stronger..so the sun can overwin the winter more easilly ..with the help of a 12 good glasses of wine, couple pints and nice food and under a good december mood, I produced what stands below…It is just my opinion.. freedom of speech..maybe some will say : “ Do not agree, or agree all or just 10% of it. “ Doesn’t matter..



    Read for my lyric-review entry elsewhere on the board if ya like.What comes next is about the musical part and what comes in my mind when I listen to the album Lionheart.



    Witchfinder General



    After reading the lyrics once again I put the CD in the CD-player. I was so nervous, that instead of the CD I did put in the little round beer- underplate (beer-viltje) in the CD-Player after a few seconds I thought there is something wrong with the CD.. I looked on the display. It said “no disc”..opened it ..”Heey!” there was the plate again! Quickly new start with CD and there was the first tune after months of nervous waiting and nail-biting! The first thing was suprising..I expected a intro..but not this time..but an ‘instrumental-echooo’ like a sort of echo from the past, of those dark-middelages, an echo from a time in which the light went out for a long time .from 3 sec- 20 sec the guitars do remind me of the Iron Maiden ‘Aces High’ part in which the lyric sounds “ ten ME-109’s from out of the sun “ (Live after Death -album only this part) Biff’s voice is great on this song, in fact on this whole album, he has a clear voice, good articulation. I like the speed of the song, acceleration due to the foot-technics of the drummer???. The percussion is perfect, Georg Michael gives something extra-flavour to Saxon m.o. The part 2 min 09 sec. til 2 min. 34 is in m.o too long and to me the less favourite part of the CD inclusive the end that sounds the same at 4 min. 14 and 4 min .4.47sec. The solo from 2 min 35 sec til.. 3min. 11 sec. is ok, but doesn’t stick to my memory, that means I cannot dream it..or play, reproduce the solo in my head when I walk on the street, you understand? ( I mean you can wake me up at 2 a.m. and ask me to whistle the solo of “Strong Arm of the Law”and I can and will..perform the solo as if I were a blackbird in springtime… but the solo on this nummer, I just cannot produce a single tune.. my tongue and memmory just cannot imitate it .. Maybe another can though.. but I cant..first I have to put on the CD-number on my CD-player and then I can do it better…maybe that is why I play this Lionheart CD not as often (Don’t worry I play it 6 times a week and love it!!) as the Killing Ground and Unleash the Beast album, because you want to hear what you already have on your C-drive in your head, think about this..its the same when you don’t have Chinese words in your head, then you will not come in contact with a Chinese person to have a nice Chinese conversation, because the words (sound) are not in your head! You aren’t able to make the understandable sound) At 3 min. 02 sec til 3 min. 10 sec. the guitar solo does remind me of ‘Paradise Lost-guitar-sound and the guitar sound of Iron Maiden guitarist Dave Murrray in the song ‘Be quick or be dead’’ What I like about this song is the production, and that counts for the whole album, I think it’s the best produced album this Lionheart-album ever from Saxon, its sound is embedded in a good pillow, I will certainly understand that this album took a long time and that’s why I can forgive the postpone if this Lionheart Album. You cannot judge this CD after you have listened this CD on your walkman, so not on your stereo boxes in your room. In fact I prefer hearing this CD on Walkman then on bigger boxes in my room, you hear so much more guitar-riffs and Nibbs- bass support beneath the upper sound. Just listen to it and count it! I only hear those things on my Walkman and not on the big boxes in my livingroom, so the walkman gives me more pleasure hearing this CD, strange isn’t it?, wonder if other listeners or forum-users have same experience? I admit its not my favourite number on this album..maybe, to be true, and I am always true, its to me the worst song of it. I mean it doesn’t give me that particular good feeling (Or is that the goal of this song because the middelages were dark and full off bad-things and feelings!?), maybe it comes, because it’s a song that is totally different from all the other Saxon-songs I am used to? Question:” Name me a song from the Saxon- past that does remind you of Witchfinder..anyone?! So boys and girls after the first song (musically I mean) I thought..oeps..!! but still in good mood because there were another 9 songs on this CD, I held hope! Conclusion on a scale from 1-10 I give this song a 6.



    Man and Machine



    Then the next song.. It immediately gets my heart…I like it..gives me a good feeling Intro gives me a reminding of the ‘Forever Free-album atmosphere’I like the slowing –down technic of the new drummer (sec 6-8). Is a song I like immediately without playing it more than once. I like the bridge, pathening the way to the headsolo, of only 2 seconds at1.57 min-1.59 min.where the guitar sounds gets down. The headsolo from 1.59min til 2.29min is splendid I whistle the solo-part 2.19 min-2.29min a lot, does remind me of the Killingground-album solo’s. The head-solo part 2.13min-2.18 min gives me a mystical feeling: brings me back to the Terminal Velocity –song-part 2.42-2.45min of the Unleash the beast album. The 1.34 min-1.56min of the solo that leads to the litlle bridge of 2 seconds is very good, gives a good feeling. I can whistle it..when I can whistle it, its good then I know its on my C-drive in the head.

    Conclusion on a scale from 1-10 I give this song a 9. Very content with this song. Gets me warmed up !



    The Return



    OH! There it is..not at the beginning of the album, this time on 3th place the intro-theme of the album. Always glad to hear a good intro-theme on a saxon-album, gives something extra! What a lovely mystical-gothic feeling does it give to me..I see the sommer-winter-wende- fire burning in the forest outside my house.I have a glass wine in the hand, and then this nice choir singing something like..”Calling Home”or “Coming Home. “(Still don’t know what they sing, maybe a good one for a new competition on this board?, winkie, winkie webmaster..) “Man I feel already at Home” My mind goes to past ages, drifts away..back to ledgend times. I see King Lionheart riding on a white horse coming from out of the forest in my direction to claim his thrown, people celebrating round the fire. I hear the akoestic (?)guitar underneath the coir.. fantastic! Give it an 8



    Lionheart



    Then… when I am enjoying and still in the hypnotising influence of –The Return- There is the Title song. The first 20 seconds do remind me of the destiny album atmosphere, like in the S.O.S-song-intro.. then a quick acceleration ..like that til 31 sec.. Then Biff starts singing or can I better say: He is telling (!) His voice sounds great, good articulation. The short bassing-support of Nibbs now and then underneath it, feel good, good work, in the earphones. The chorus is ok, At 2.54 min The Return- choir comes back, as backing vocal-minstrell-angels. Gives a nice rest again (good mixture in this song slow- down moments and then again acceleration!), makes me nipping my wine glass again..the bridge of only 1 second 3.12 min leading to the solo part is so important to me (When it hadn’t been there I should have missed it..can you imagine? only 1 second!!!!) from then the solopart 3.13min-3.32min does remind of the solo on Dallas 1 PM. Then immediately a fantastic accelerating continuing solo ( 2 times to be complete! (3.48min-3.52min.gives me chicken-skinn!)) of the solo in the part 3.33 min-3.52 min. And I can whistle it!!!!!!!The bridge 3.53 til 4.02 min reminds me of Metallica’s song ‘One’ hats what I like abaout the Saxon-albums: I always hear a lot of other heavy-bands on 1 CD disguished somehere! Without Saxon loosing their own handwriting-paraf in a song. That is just a quality not a lot bands have in the scene. I think the members of Saxon listen good to other music! Keeps you alert and modern, without forgetting the past, because the past always walks among us..and with us! A Saxon Cd is like a good Christmas-diner filt with all the ingredients of Metal. In fact when you buy a Saxon CD you know and have everything already, the rest of other Heavybands do not matter anymore then, hahaha! Saves lots of money , haha! A sort of Melting-pot-band but still having their own sound! Klasse! The outro of this song I like too ..it leaves you behind. Conclusion on a scale from 1-10 I give this song a 8,5



    Beyond the Grave



    Nice bassing Nibbs . 28 seconds the syntheseiser isn’t irritating… I’m not fond of syntheseisers but when its used ‘funtional’ (= giving a song a certain atmosphere) fine to me! On The Destiny album for example it had a not functional influence, so that did irritate me in 87, but on this song its good and that counts for the rest of the album too.Nothing wrong with syntheseisers on this album..

    The part 28sec til 45 sec brings me back in he Metalhead-atmosphere..Song of Evil-taste..then a commercial sound til 1. 1.16 min The solo 2.42 min is ok..bu I cannot whistle it, doesn’t stick on my C-drive. The chorus I like..it gives clear the desperation, nice that double voice or triple voice of Biff. I give this song a 6,5 . Maybe that’s because it has too much Metalhead-album Atmosphere in it. A lot of the songs on Metalhead and for all the solos I cannot whistle, for example Piss off and Watching you, just are not on my C-drive in the head. The metalhead-song is fantastic, can whistle it.., of course and Conquistador, Prisoner, Song of evil, All guns blazing. I just wanna make a clear difference between the album Metalhead and the ‘song’ metalhead



    Justice



    Nice intro.. middle ok..song reaches my soul immediately at 2.00 minutes nice that break and then underneath that guitarsound (?) or is it synth (?) well done..then comes a solo 2.27 min til 3.03 min that brings me back in the Killing - Ground –album-guitar-solo- atmosphere “…then before the phrase “On the bible swear”a strange sound,always makes me laugh (at 3.11-3.12min) somebody grabbing in a crocky-chips bag?! Hahaha! Just listen. Laugh my ass off! Sometimes I think they do it on purpose those bastards in the studio including the bandmembers, so we can laugh, should that be the reason? Never mind I like it…hahah!Very good song.. at the end I like this nice guitar-parts (4.01 min 4.08 min.)gives me a good feeling . Please more of such guitar sounds,.. really I’m content with this song, has the Killing ground Atmosphere that’s why.. and it has something new to what I am used



    Give this song an 8







    To live by the Sword



    What a nice intro digidigidigidigidigidigi .. AH.AH .. digidigidigidigi .. AH .. digidigidigidigi ..AH AH ..! like it and what a very good, clear, high, voice has Biff here..he plays with his voice a lot, fantastic . Heavy and quick –song I appreciate those little guitar riff-tunes on the left box on my earphone 39 sec.. 45 sec 48sec (second strofe) the same riff tunes as in the last strophe (the samuraispirit til seal) 3.12 sec 3.14 sec and 3.17 min it gives that dramatic atmosphere to it.. but as I said only when I hear it on Walkman ..on my big boxes you slightly hear it… the solo 2.17 min til 2.45 min makes me think of the band Paradise Lost again..not a solo that sticks on my C-driv in the head..but it suits to this song. It’s a song that immediately gets my attention, after once playing it already..it has tempo, etc.



    Give this song a 8,5





    Jack Tars



    Biff in the role of a minstrel. Short song..but I understand the meaning a sort of intro to English men On War. Nice intro-song. Suits in the concept of this album Song does give me a a feeling: “feel sorry for that Jack Tar and his struggle for sea mens live in those days all the pain and missing of family and duty.. tragic dramatic acoustic-guitar under it.. like it

    Rate : 7,5



    English Man O War



    Immediately reminds me of The Unleash The Beast –Album –atmosphere. Compare it with the intro and a bit of the rest of ‘Bloodletter’-song (In fact could have been written already in 97 the intro, not the case of course!!!, but m.o. could have..) Fantastic song..Tempo hits me like an Ax. Nice that chorus..gives a bit slow-down to the song..(functional so o.k.) then a solo-part at 2.00 min til 2.19min (Just compare with Piss-off song 1.59min 2.28min of that song) that reminds me of the Metalhead-album atmosphere, solo doesn’t stick on my C-drive in the head. But…!!! solopart 2.20 min 2.35 does stick in my head in fact very good!, whistle it a lot especially 2.29 min-2.35 (I hear Graham Oliver –style (?) or is it Paul (?) in that 6 sec., these 6 seconds are real one- and only-saxon-classictunes, in this 15 sec solo-part I hear the guitar-tune of the song “To Hell and back again (Still a strong favourite of me) from the Strong Arm of the Law-album, just compare these 6 seconds with the2.29min- 2.34part of that song on that album) Those 6 seconds make it a good solo as a whole… but I must confess that the first 19 seconds of the solo do remind me too much of the guitarsolos on metalhead-album..but doesn’t matter the song as a whole is fantastic



    Give it an 8



    Searching For Atlantis



    After two times hearing this song.. had to hear it twice because I touched mistacabilly on my stop button.. so that’s why..You grow slowly into the song. While I am typing this I see all these pictures on TV about asia, and all that people that have drownd in the “tsumani”waves.. I read the lyrics and ..:”We live our lives..but there is no certainty..they want be washed away like castles in the sand… how a lyric can become so realistic, even in these days.. Searching for Thailand,..just imagine!!! It has become one of my favourites on this CD like that cry out of Biff at 3.00 min OHOOOOO!! The solo 3.06 min 4.00min I liked after just one time, the part 3. 24 min 3.30 min like the best..has that Killingground sound again.The outro on this song is to me the best of all outro’s on this album.



    Figure : 8,5



    Flying on the edge



    Acceptable, but not a real reminder but the lyrics are good



    Note: 6





    This completes my review well get my calculator now the average is: 6+9+8+8,5+6,5+8+8,5+7,5+8+8,5+6:11=7,7 = round to above = a well deserved 8



    To end :very content with this album…proud to have it in my collection



    Songs with a mixture of Unleash the Beast-album flavour and Killing-ground-album flavour I always give a higher degree I notice all the time, strange?..or not? + Wheels of Steel and Strong Arm of the Law ingredients I like too



    Further.. very content with the new drummer on this CD . Fritz was also OK, sais that in another entry on the board



    HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYBODY AND WATCH OUT WITH FIREWORKS BYEBYE !!

    Greetings Heavycelli :D :wave:
     
  2. Robocat

    Robocat New Metal Member

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    I enjoy LionHeart very much also.
    Like many Saxon albums it took a few listens to really appreciate the diverse set.
    but like most saxon fans I am just appreciative that Saxon are still going strong and keeping the Flame burning In 2005.
     
  3. nightwar

    nightwar Member

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    Fair comment, RoboCat. And the best thing about Saxon is that they never really 'Lost It' or 'Sold Out' in all this time.

    Heavycelli - Wow! That's some review! If I was drinking wine whilt I wrote a review that long, I would've passed out before finishing it!
    I enjoyed reading it and very much appreciate hearing from such insightful Rock fans!

    A couple of points:
    I know what you mean when a Guitar solo does not have that melodic substance to it (nice example with your internal C Drive!). More recent Saxon songs do not have so many memorable solos, but I think the reason is that the band's current style of song and attitude towards guitar solos. Similiar to your comments on synths (I agree, by the way!), the solos or middlesections are leaning towards a focus on atmosphere and not so much on melody. 'WitchFinder General' is a fine example of this. It sounds kind of manic, violent and oppressive, very much reflecting the lyrics of the piece. I also think that Doug is much more interested in this style of guitar sound and he tends to perform many of the recent solo work.

    'Searching For Atlantis' - now you've mentioned it, the song is kind of eeriley relevant, isn't it. This has never been one of my favouite songs on 'LionHeart' but may provide a different attitude in me relating to the current subtext that the lyrics infer.

    'Flying On The Edge' - I reckon that wine was starting to kick in when you thought about reviewing this one, eh? A little shorter that the previus efforts!
    Why is it that noone seems very keen on this song, but I think it is OK? The song does not really fit into the album - very different in style and lyrics - but it has got a kick-ass solo on it that reminds me of the Eightie's Saxon!
     
  4. Janneman666

    Janneman666 New Metal Member

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  5. valanx

    valanx Room of Angel

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    Excellent in depth Review !!!

    Heres my Review for 'LionHeart' :

    The album fuckin rules!!! Buy it NOW!!! Play it LOUD!!!
     
  6. heavycelli

    heavycelli Member

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    very nice review Janneman, the same solos you mention are the solos that catches my heart too, always nice reading a personal review

    bedankt Janneman666 thank you

    gr Heavycelli
     
  7. nightwar

    nightwar Member

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    Thanks for the reviews, Mr 666!

    Valanx - all I can say is that your review is specific, descriptive, objective, to the point and correcto-mundo! COOL!!!
     

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