Sunday, April 26, 2015

April 26th, 2015 - The Ultra Gnar Gnar Crusader

Good evening/morning!  Time for some heavy-duty rock and roll and brew my friends!!  The Meista here tonight pairing Saxon's classic NWOBHM album "Crusader" with Ultra Gnar Gnar IPA from Base Camp Brewing Company!  Oh yeah!!
Album Info:
  • Artist: Saxon
  • Title: "Crusader"
  • Recorded: 1984 at the famed Sound City Studios, Los Angeles, California,
  • Release date: April 16th, 1984 (6th studio album by Saxon)
  • Record company: Carrere
  • Album cover art: Paul R. Gregory
  • Personnel:  Biff Byford (lead vocals), Steve Dawson (bass guitar), Nigel Glockler (drums), Graham Oliver (guitar), and Paul Quinn (guitar)
  • Musical style: Heavy metal/hard rock
  • Sound: Aggressive, in-your-face, celebratory hard rock with lots of great hooks and melodies! 
  • Major themes: Rock and roll, freedom, knights, warriors, fighting for your beliefs, etc.
  • Notes: One of the most important and influential metal bands out there, Saxon's "Crusader" album sold over 2 million copies!  Why this band isn't celebrated more in the States is beyond me!
  • Tracks:   
  1. "The Crusader Prelude"
  2. "Crusader"
  3. "A Little Bit Of What You Fancy"
  4. "Sailing To America"
  5. "Set Me Free" (Sweet cover)
  6. "Just Let Me Rock"
  7. "Bad Boys (Like To Rock 'N' Roll)"
  8. "Do It All For You"
  9. "Rock City"
  10. "Run For Your Lives"

    Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Base Camp Brewing Company (Portland, Oregon)
  • Website:
  • Brew: Ultra Gnar Gnar IPA
  • Style: American India Pale Ale (IPA)
  • Serving: 12 ounce can
  • ABV: 6.7%
  • IBUs: 60
  • Gravity: 15.4 degrees Plato
  • Ingredients: "Six different Oregon-grown flavor and aroma hop varietals" and " specialty-malted barley and oats".
  • Pour: The Ultra Gnar Gnar IPA pours a very cloudy dark caramel-amber with a thick and foamy 1+ finger white head that displays sustained and intricate lacing throughout.
  • Nose: Nice and pungent, the nose of the Ultra Gnar Gnar is defined by big citrus, pine resin, and tropical fruit aromas.  There are notes of orange peel, grapefruit, lemon zest, pine, cedar, mango, and pineapple with some good caramel malt notes as well.
  • Taste: Following the nose, the taste is embodied by big citrus, pine, and tropical fruit along with herbal, floral, malt, and mineral flavors.  There are notes of tangerine, grapefruit, mango, white pepper, black tea, Smarties, and soft caramel.
  • Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation, the Ultra Gnar Gnar IPA is fairly smooth, but with a bitter, dry, and sharp finish.
Overall pairing: The Ultra Gnar Gnar's hoppy and biting, yet very drinkable nature is great for the straight-ahead approach to Saxon's music!  Like "Crusader", the Ultra Gnar Gnar is aggressive, yet well-balanced and richly textured.  Byford's vocals are well-complimented by the citrus notes while the more biting hoppy flavors play off the fiery guitar work of Oliver and Quinn.


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