Nima : Well, what is there left to say about Saxon? In the last 32 years the band has almost released classis after classic and even though they have also released some less fortunate albums, since 'Dogs Of War' (1995) and especially the fantastic 'Unleash The Beast' (1997) the band has only delivered quality. From the 'Lionheart' (2004) album onwards, the band has usually come up with a mix of their fast and non-compromised heavy metal side and the more old-fashioned rock side on every album.
The band's nineteenth studio album has also become exactly what you would and could have expected from Saxon, and again the band totally hits the bull's-eye. With the opening track, and also the new single, 'Hammer Of The Gods' the band strikes immediately and the album makes a very powerful start. The magnificent guitar wizardry from the gentlemen Quinn and Scarratt, together with the impressive rhythm section Glockler/Carter and of course the well-known voice of chief Biff Byford (who still sounds as great and powerful as ever), is utterly SAXON and as far as I'm concerned the album already can get off. The following 'Back In '79' and 'Surviving Against The Odds' are two magnificent rockers and go more back in the direction of the glory days, to head to the more epic 'Mists Of Avalon', from there. This track stands a bit more out than the previous two and as highly strong riffs and vocal lines. The guest appearance of legendary keyboarder Don Airy (Ozzy, Rainbow and Deep Purple a.o.) is definitely a plus as well and gives the song the mystery it needs. Airy is later also to be heard on the orchestral-sounding 'When Doomsday Comes (Hybrid Theory)'. This song, together with the darker 'No Rest For The Wicked' was especially composed for the upcoming motion picture 'Hybrid Theory' by the way! But anyway, the title track is another beautiful epic that reminds me of the atmosphere they created on 'Crusader' as well. The rockers return in form of 'Chasing The Bullers' and 'Ballad Of The Working Man', and with 'Afterburner' (which is my personal favourite), the album has another first-class speed demon. And finally we also get an orchestral version of the title track.
The production this time was not in the hands of Charlie Bauerfeind (who did all the records since 'Lionheart' and who was also responsible for 'Metal Head'), but the album was recorded in England, with Toby Jepson (Little Angels) and of course Biff behind the board. This has only been in both the band and the album's advantage. All put together 'Call To Arms' is definitely a typical Saxon record an again a high-quality heavy metal killer. And when a band at this age (let's be honest) can still be this energetic, enthusiastic, trusted and at the same time also refreshing, then that deserves outmost respect. So in conclusion; just purchase this thing immediately!