Solid Book Of Rock is a beautyfully packaged box set with the albums between 1991-2009, including 11 CD´s, 3 DVD´s and a vinyl-sized booklet with all the lyrics. This is the era that introduced bassist Nibbs Carter and guitarist Doug Scarratt that both have been in the band longer than the original members Steve Dawson and Graham Oliver.
Although, these albums might not be considered by many as classic as their 80´s era. Saxon continued to release great albums and always stood their ground, never giving up on their loyal fans and stuck to the sound of true heavy metal.
There are some up´s and down´s but mainly strong albums where the charismatic frontman Biff Byford never lost power in his voice, not once can I hear signs of a voice that has passed it´s expiry date. On the contrary, Byford´s vocals has improved and got stronger with age. If you have been to any of their shows, you know what I´m talking about.
The live DVD "A night out with the boys" is really fun to watch where the band celebrated the 25th anniversary of NWOBHM, recorded on the 80´s tour in 2005. Playing only small clubs and songs from their early era, the live versions of "Frozen rainbow" and "To hell and back again" stand out.
Of all the CD´s, the albums "Forever free" (1992) and "Unleash the beast" (1997) are the weakest ones, while the major part is really good like "Dogs of war" (1995), "Killing ground" (2001), "The inner sanctum" (2007) and "Into the labyrinth" (2009).
But the highlights and my favorite albums are the superb "Solid ball of rock" (1991), the dark and heavy "Metalhead" (1999) and the mighty "Lionheart" (2004), these are just as great as the essential Saxon.
"Solid Book Of Rock" is a perfect investment in a time when Saxon is big again, they are headlining festivals and aiming for the upcoming album "Thunderbolt" (2018) to be their best selling album since the 80´s.
Solid ball of rock - Solid ball of rock, Requiem
Forever free - Hole in the sky, Night hunter
Dogs of war - Hold on, The great white buffalo
Unleash the beast - Unleash the beast, Cut out the disease
Metalhead - Conquistador, Metalhead
Killing Ground - Court of the Crimson King, Shadows on the wall
Classics Re-recorded - Strong arm of the law, And the bands played on
Lionheart - Lionheart, English Man O War
The Inner Sanctum - Let me feel your power, Red star falling
Into the labyrinth - Valley of the kings, Battalions of steel