Review: Loud, Proud and Live – Official Bootleg

The most recent album from British metal legends Saxon came in a delightful box-set. This box featured the album on CD, vinyl and cassette but also came with a thirty three minute live bootleg titled, Loud, Proud and Live. A charming but short representation of Saxon on stage.

Looking at Loud, Proud and Live – Official Bootleg as a whole, it is nice to have a short but effective live record from a band in 2018. Normally live albums in modern times features an entire concert or the maximum amount of tracks they could squeeze onto a CD. With this one being just over half an hour long, it gives the listener a short but highly entertaining disc to put on when they don’t want to listen to a two hour live performance.

The performances were recorded by the band at Barcelona and London on the 2016 Battering Ram tour, a tour which I attended. That in itself makes it a nice souvenir for those of us who attended that tour, or those shows specifically. The band’s performance for the most part is right on the money. The drums are extremely solid, the guitars are heavy enough to make Motörhead proud and the lead solos sound wonderful. Biff Byford sounds a little rough in places, specifically on the first two tracks. But considering this is a bootleg, Byford’s naturally low croaky vocals suits Saxon’s music and it isn’t as off putting compared to say Bruce Dickinson’s equally croaky performance on Iron Maiden’s Maiden England ’88 live album. No one is perfect after all and the last dozen songs show Biff in better shape vocally, which makes up for it.

Loud, Proud and Live – Official Bootleg, is not something that Saxon fans should go out their way for. It is certainly a nice little record to have. It is short, sounds really good and has a great selection of songs. Those of you who fancy owning such things would have likely bought the Thunderbolt box-set anyway and have this in your possession. If you don’t own Thunderbolt and fancy a nice little extra, I suggest taking a look at that box-set as it might provide you with a little extra enjoyment.

Rating : 7 / 10

Where to buy :

Track Listing :

  1. Battering Ram
  2. Sacrifice
  3. The Devil's Footprint
  4. Chasing the Bullets
  5. Queen of Hearts
  6. Killing Ground
  7. 20,000ft
  8. Power and Glory