In celebration of the 40th anniversary of SAXON's "Wheels Of Steel" album, singer Biff Byford and his son Seb Byford have shared their acoustic rendition of the LP's title track. The performance was recorded at their home whilst self-isolating during the COVID-19 international lockdown. Byford and guitarist Paul Quinn are the sole remaining original members in SAXON's current lineup. Originally from South Yorkshire, England, SAXON has gone on to sell about 23 million albums and has produced such classic songs as "Denim And Leather", "Princess Of The Night", "Wheels Of Steel" and "Power And Glory". Byford recently spoke to The Metal Voice about the progress of the recording sessions for SAXON's follow-up to 2018's "Thunderbolt" album. Asked about the musical direction of the new SAXON material, Byford said: "It's heavy. I would say the direction is the same as 'Thunderbolt' and 'Battering Ram' [2015] [and] 'Sacrifice' [2013]. It's heavy and it's quite British[-sounding]; we like to retain that. Me and [bassist] Nibbs [Carter] wrote most of the songs again. Now we're all on hold [because of the coronavirus pandemic]. I'm still open to writing more songs. I think the boys are working on songs, so if they come up with anything really strong, then we might re-record some of the stuff and put some newer stuff back in again that they've written." He continued: "What I do, I have a start time when I want the boys to start writing, and that's how we do albums. And Nibbs is just a fiend with it — he just writes so many ideas down; it's crazy. I'm getting ideas from all the boys, but predominantly most of them are from Nibbs. "So, yeah, it's heavy," he added. "There's some great guitar playing on it from the boys. And Nigel's [Glockler] drumming is up there with much younger drummers, if you know what I mean — he's pushing himself very hard with it." Byford's first solo album, "School Of Hard Knocks", was released on February 21 via Silver Lining Music. The disc features Byford on vocals (and a spot of four-string thunder) along with OPETH's Fredrik Åkesson on guitars, drummer Christian Lundqvist and bass player Gus Macricostas. The album also features guest appearances by Phil Campbell (MOTÖRHEAD), Alex Holzwarth (RHAPSODY OF FIRE and TURILLI/LIONE RHAPSODY), Nick Barker (VOICES), Dave Kemp (WAYWARD SONS) and Nibbs Carter (SAXON). The LP was produced by Byford, recorded by Jacky Lehmann at Brighton Electric Studios in Brighton (U.K.) and mixed at Queen Street Studios in Stockholm (Sweden) by Mats Valentin.

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