Tag Archives: Judas Priest

New Judas Priest video: Lightning Strike

Video: Judas Priest -- “Lightning Strike”

Judas Priest - Lightning Strike (Official Video)

From Firepower, out March 9 on Sony Music.

The thing about being a Judas Priest fan is that it is not based on rationality. Unless, of course, you think sitting in a dark basement room with your favorite bottle listening to “Better By You, Better Than Me” is reasonable. It’s not. It’s quite insane. And that is rather the point (of entry).

And so it is that Halford and company have headed out to the highway once again, cranking up the speed of a heavy kind with the new release “Lightning Strike.” Yes, if there is one positive message the boys from Birmingham want to get across it is that whilst lightning may not strike twice, the Demons from Hell do. Fifty million times, as a matter of fact. Not to mention untold millions of metal maniacs in heavy metal parking lots all around the world.

Were we to judge the old gents from the thorns they produce we’d be obliged to say that they do look and sound pretty good for men who surely lost touch with reality lo so many years ago. Crunching guitar(s)? Of course. Lyrics equivalent to the ramblings of a mental patient obsessed with the occult? You bet. Will this satisfy the fans of yore? Well that is not so easy to answer.

Do you suppose that a Chicago Bulls fan from say, 1993, is quite pleased with the product put on the floor today? After all, it’s still NBA basketball and they are amazingly talented. Err, but some of the old magic is not quite there now is it?

Now before you get too concerned and think your buddy Crustin does not like the music please don’t misunderstand. As one who has reaped a living nightmare from hell since the good old days of Sin After Sin, the latest video, album, and I am sure subsequent tour, are perfectly in line with those of us who are legion, and live beyond the realms of death.

Oh, and it is not as horrific as “Turbo Lover.”

Judas Priest: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Halford – Halford III: Winter Songs

Halford - Halford III: Winter SongsHalfordHalford III: Winter Songs (Metal God Entertainment)

I laughed at Twisted Sister‘s Twisted Christmas, but apparently, they laughed all the way to the bank.

I’ll give ’em credit for at least opening my mind up to the idea of a heavy metal Christmas effort, but the more I thought about it, the more I began to realize that Trans-Siberian Orchestra is probably a good as the metal Christmas genre is going to get. And the more I thought about what exactly TSO does each year, the more I think it’s a fucking awesome idea: You blow the entire season up to rival the endless barrage of commercialism, throw in some smoke, lasers, and breakneck fingertapping guitar solos.

In 60 days, you’ve made enough bank for the next 10 months and like stop-motion Burl Ives you’re back next year.

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Judas Priest – A Touch Of Evil: Live

Judas Priest - A Touch Of Evil: LiveJudas PriestA Touch Of Evil: Live (Epic)

The Priest is no stranger to live album documents and they’ve seen both sides of the quality aspect of those releases. Thirty years ago, they released their first—and still their greatest—live effort, Unleashed In The East. It captured the band on their ascension and it featured a track listing that housed some of the best material from their ’70s output.

By the time of their second live effort, 1987’s Priest…Live, the tape captured the band bloated by success and woefully unaware that their relevance in metal’s increasingly visual arena was screeching to a halt. A pair of Ripper Owens-led Priest live recordings found the band spinning their wheels in front of all but the most devoted of fans.

Adding up all of these offerings, the argument can be made: do we really need another live album from Judas Priest?

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The Metal Masters Tour Live In Chicago

Metal MasterThe Metal Masters: Testament, Motorhead, Heaven & Hell, Judas Priest

Chicago, August 19, 2008

There is a debate going on in my head that I think was solved in Chicago on Tuesday night. After growing up around metal, disowning it in college and then coming back around to it in my late 30s, my concern was that the recent resurgence was a manifestation of some mid-life crisis. If you haven’t yet faced the truth of middle age, let me fill you in: it’s a drag. It’s especially brutal when you focus on the ramifications of age and you look for opportunities to avoid the reality of your years.

Heavy metal may be the best type of music for this. It’s the epitome of fantasy after all, whether it addresses sexual prowess, dungeons and dragons fantasy, or overt machismo. Since it’s the perfect soundtrack for make believe, could it be possible that I’m drawn to it again to help ignore the obvious? When one is facing the reality that life’s rollercoaster is now descending towards the inevitable end of the ride, what better genre to reach for than heavy metal?

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Judas Priest – Nostradamus

Judas Priest - NostradamusJudas PriestNostradamus (Sony)

When I first heard that Judas Priest was basing their next album on the life of Nostradamus, I thought the idea was hilarious. When the laughter ended, it suddenly dawned on me that composing an album…a concept double album…at this stage of their career is an incredibly brave decision.

Strange, to be sure, but brave nonetheless.

After all, this is a band that has been in existence for thirty years and achieved an iconic stature where all they need to do is essentially play it safe, rest comfortably on their impressive history and trudge out the hits every few years.

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Rainbow in the Dark – Gays in Metal

Decibel magazine has a feature looking at gays in the metal scene, a genre not really known for accepting homosexuality despite being rife with homoerotic clothing and imagery: Despite no less a genre pioneer than Rob Halford of Judas Priest coming out in 1998, and aside from the occasional song like Brutal Truth’s “Anti-Homophobe,” you’d think metal was some homo-free zone where no one needs to watch their language.

Rock Star

Rock_star_ver1If you’ve ever worn a Twisted Sister pin on your jean jacket. . .

If you’ve ever owned a copy of Condition Critical. . .

If you’ve ever slow-danced to a Van Halen song. . .

If you’ve ever cut the sleeves off of a black concert T-shirt. . .

If you’ve ever written “666: The Number of the Beast” on your Trapper Keeper. . .

If you’ve ever hung out in Derek Lado’s basement. . .

If you’ve ever wished you looked more like Stephen Pearcy and less like Klaus Meine. . .

I admonish you: Go see Rock Star. See it in the theater, on the biggest screen, with the best sound system you can find. The story is predictable but the screenwriting is pretty good, given the weak plot. It’s basically about a guy (Marky Mark, in a good performance) who fronts a hair-metal tribute band in about 1985. When the real band’s lead singer leaves, they hire him to replace the guy and he gets to live the dream. (Supposedly, this is based on the true story of current Judas Priest lead singer Tim “Ripper” Owens.) The concert sequences are amazing, the music is totally cool, and there’s no way you can sit through the whole movie without making the sign of the devil.