Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE)

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SAXON / Lemmy 500

Date: 24th September, 2016
Venue: Ljungbyhed Parken
Tickets: 300SEK (€29/$33)
Promoter: V8 Thundercars
Photos: Erika Wallberg


Never heard of Ljungbyhed before, but don’t worry - a few, even in Sweden, could point it out on a map. The benefit with smaller places though is that the resources available are cheap. In this case, the old military airfield used by the now closed flight battalion, which had been suitably rebuilt to host car races nowadays. And, hell yes, V8 Power Machines racing was the warm-up for the concert worked in my world. Apparently more people agree, since the event was allowed to be called Lemmy 500.

I still felt a little bit outside though, since I don’t know anything about competitions like these. I guess walking around and looking at the cars from close getting the a chance to talk to the drivers was close to a meet and greet in the Heavy Metal world. I must admit though the roar of the engines as the start was a fact really sent shivers down my spine. And the 20 minutes’ heat went down rather fast and it was exciting to see it all. After all the races Alexander Graff from Uppsala was the Swedish Champion of the V8 Thundercars class.

V8 Thundercars

V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) V8 Thundercars @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)

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It was for SAXON I went to the Lemmy 500 event though. That it was announced Biff and co would play a few songs together with Mikkey Dee and Phil Campbell from MOTÖRHEAD’s fame of course boosted the eagerness to go and the name made a whole lot more sense right away. As usual, the SAXON show started with a cranked up “It's A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)”; the AC/DC classic has been the start signal for the last couple of tours now. And it sure worked as a wake-up call for many people. The area in front of the stage was very sparsely crowded when the clock struck show-time. But the more of the AC/DC song that passed, the more people joined in. Ok, it wasn’t a massive event, a rough guess I’d say the show attracted somewhere between 2000-3000 people.

It doesn’t really matter where SAXON play though; they always give it all and this was no exception on a very nice late September evening. “Battering Ram” opened the set in a grand way, even though it’s from the band’s last studio release it feels like a classic. And to follow it up with “Motorcycle Man” sure worked perfectly. To my surprise the crowd was rather loud that night. The last small festival I saw SAXON the crowd was almost quiet between the songs. Luckily that wasn’t the case now.

The stage was built for SAXON; yes, they were the only band playing on the main stage which was massive. I didn’t think the organizers would be that serious with the music, but it was a massive set with tons of lights and the next benefit with a non-music event. No real restriction on the volume. A few more decibels did the sound good so SAXON sounded very powerful. “20,000 Ft” is a live favorite and it doesn’t matter how many times I hear it live, it never gets boring. There weren’t many surprises in the set, but it’s the same with many SAXON songs, as it is for “20,000 Ft”, always a pleasure to hear them. One song I didn’t really expect the band to play was “Dogs of War”, an amazing song if you’d ask me so it was awesome to hear it. In the introduction to “747 (Strangers In The Night)” Biff mentioned this being our song (the Swedes), the fun thing was that the guesses from the crowd was very varied and I don’t think anyone shouted the right title. Nonetheless, they all went bananas when the song kicked off.

One thing I really appreciate with SAXON is that what you hear coming out from the stage is 100% live, no pre-recordings or backing tracks. Which allows the band to improvise a bit with the setlist. This night the crowd shouted “The Eagle Has Landed” and the request was granted. The massive track felt totally right in the set and the atmosphere was great. The build-up in the song works perfect on stage. As this wasn’t planned, Biff blamed the crowd if he’d been dragged off the stage before the set ended since they had a deadline and had to finish before the second part of the races.

The just a little over an hour long set ended with “Denim And Leather” and the finale was with “Princess Of The Night”. So it was a massive set SAXON delivered, it of course felt short since it’s virtually an hour less than normal. But it was good, the band was on fire and it wasn’t really the end.

SAXON setlist:

01. Intro – “It's A Long Way To The Top (If You Wanna Rock 'n' Roll)”
02. “Battering Ram”
03. “Motorcycle Man”
04. “Sacrifice”
05. "Power And The Glory”
06. “I've Got To Rock (To Stay Alive)”
07. “20,000 Ft”
08. “Dogs Of War”
09. “Heavy Metal Thunder”
10. “747 (Strangers In The Night)”
11. “The Eagle Has Landed”
12. “Denim And Leather”
13. “Princess Of The Night”

SAXON

Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)

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As the main focus of the event was racing fast cars after SAXON, the second part of the event with the V8 Thunder and the Legends cars was to take place before the second set for the night. Also, before Mikkey Dee and Phil Campbell could take on the stage with SAXON it was the distribution of prizes for the champions. Massive shiny trophies were handed out to the drivers. One got a Fender Stratocaster and looked so and so happy about that. And in great motor sports tradition the winners then showered the crowd in champagne, another thing I never thought I’d get to experience live.

And then, it was time for the second set; Biff, Nibbs and Doug backed up Mikkey and Phil for the songs. Paul lost his guitar to Phil, and yes, they actually used the same gear. That Mikkey played Nigel Glocker’s drums is no wonder but I thought Phil would bring his own guitar. It’s damn cool, just take what’s available and then go for it. I like that attitude. Biff sounded excellent in “Born To Raise Hell” and he pulled that off as it would have been a SAXON original. Then the real MOTÖRHEAD classics followed; “Ace Of Spades” and “Overkill” are a bit more screamy, and he did a very good job there too but it sounded a little forced on occasion. Lemmy had a one of kind voice and Biff’s character differs a lot, so it’s no wonder he had to work hard for the last two.

The most fun though was seeing Doug Scarrat and the energy he had for this set. He was all over the stage. He normally is energetic with SAXON also but it was different here. More poses and more running around.

Three songs felt a little cheap, I don’t think I expected more though but I sure wanted more. Still it was great to see and it felt like very special moment and I’m really happy I got to experience it. Both races and music.

SAXON w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell setlist:

01. “Born To Raise Hell”
02. “Ace Of Spades”
03. “Overkill”

SAXON w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell

Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)
Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg) Saxon w/ Mikkey Dee, Phil Campbell @ Ljungbyhed Parken, Ljungbyhed (SE) (photos by Erika Wallberg)

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