Tag Archives: judas priest

Friday Morning Metal – Judas Priest – Lightning Strike

NEW JUDAS PRIEST! They’ve got an album coming out soon, Firepower, and this is the first single released. It’s called Lightning Strike, and while it’s similar to Priest’s more recent fare, it’s a solid rollicking metal anthem ready for arenas across this great earth.

At first blush, it almost sounds like a song that could’ve been on Halford’s solo projects. The main riff sounds chuggy and great, and the drums have a steady groove, and it’d fit perfectly between Cyber World and Locked and Loaded. Halford’s scream is not quite what it used to be, but he’s putting together a body of work that far surpasses most vocalists, and being able to pivot like he has keeps him from sounding like Brian Johnson. The guitar solo is a soaring achievement, noodly and guitarmonized and totally awesome.

Clocking in at three and a half minutes long, it’s the perfect length to feature everything that makes Judas Priest awesome: driving drums, steady riffs, and a metal god at the helm. I’m looking forward to Smarch when the whole album comes out!

Friday Morning Metal – Sabaton – All Guns Blazing

Sabaton’s got a new album, and on that album is a delightful cover of Judas Priest’s All Guns Blazing. So you get to hear that today! Doing the song as a duet between the lead singer and one of their guitarists makes it fun, you get the solid Sabaton sound and then a dude trying really hard to mimic the Scream, so much that even Wikipedia editors don’t know what’s up:
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The cover definitely has a bigger, sort of industrial sound on it, which is great. I like when bands put their own spin on a cover and don’t just try to do the song exactly the same as the original.

Music of 2014 – In No Particular Order

Hah so every jagweed and dilsnoofus is making top ten albums lists of 2014 so I’m going to try to do the same. I imagine it’ll be more like a top 7. Maybe 8.

alestorm-sunset-on-the-golden-age Alestorm – Sunset On the Golden Age: I’ve been a huge fan of Alestorm since Captain Morgan’s revenge. Their brand of pirate metal is tighter than ever on Sunset on the Golden Age, jumping from frenetic pit screamers like Wooden Leg to mellow party classics like Hangover. Chris Bowes’ vocals continue to give off a great pirate bent while still stretching his skills, and I think the addition of a second keyboardist not only fills out the sound, but allows him to focus more on the singing than the keyboarding from time to time.
D'Angelo_-_Black_Messiah_Album_Cover D’Angelo & The Vanguard – Black Messiah: Hah I write about metal here all the time, and here’s a crazy great funk album. I think I listened to it five times in a row when I first got it. Life needs more funk in it. And not just funk, good damn funk. This is it. I know plenty of butts are already moving to “Ain’t that Easy” and I can only imagine how many kids are going to be born in September because of this album.
Black_Moon_Rising_(Falconer_album)_coverart Falconer – Black Moon Rising: Man Mathias Blad has a phenomenal set of pipes. This album starts off with a blast with Locust Swarm, bringing you into all the might and majesty that you expect from a Falconer album. A healthy dose of double kick bass drums, proper balance between noodly and chunky guitars, and Blad’s vocals lilting over it all. Now if only they’d tour the US…
murder-city-devils-white-ghost-blood-on-its-hands-again-cover-art Murder City Devils – The White Ghost Has Blood on Its Hands Again: I grew up across the lake from the city and cut my teeth on plenty of Murder City Devils back in the late 90s. I even saw their first last show, Halloween 2001. These guys have put together their fare share of rock albums, and The White Ghost Has Blood on Its Hands Again takes it to a new direction. A few of the songs, like Pale Disguise, have a kind of unnerving, foreboding feel to them, gives me Nick Cave vibes.
Primus_&_The_Chocolate_Factory Primus – Primus & The Chocolate Factory: Speaking of unnerving and foreboding. Take one of the most terrifying movies of many childhoods, add in Les Claypool, and you have something that probably keeps a few adults up at night. Based on the music from the 1971 Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Primus manages to take the songs that were already creepy and add a slow crescendo of dissonance and terror, turning this into a go-to album for many halloween mixes.
DragonForce-Maximum-Overload Dragonforce – Maximum Overload: Much like Falconer, I got a little bored with Dragonforce for a bit. I think it was the singer they had or something after the original left. Anyway, they got a new singer and they have reclaimed a place in my heart! Especially with a power metal cover of Ring of Fire. That’s just great. The album has the same great key changes and codas you expect from classic Dragonforce, and the new singer does a grand job keeping up.
JudasPriestRedeemerSouls Judas Priest – Redeemer of Souls: I’m not sure how a bunch of guys in their mid 60s can rock as balls out as Judas Priest do, but they manage to pull it off on Redeemer of Souls. The vocals aren’t as brutal as, say, Screaming for Vengeance or Painkiller, but you get such a solid performance from Halford no matter what octave he’s hitting. Scope out Dragonaut, and wonder if that’s a space dragon or a guy who flies around and battles on a dragon. And then get your face melted with the Halls of Valhalla!

Whattaya know, it’s seven!

Judas Priest – Redeemer of Souls Review

JudasPriestRedeemerSoulsJudas Priest has been around for 44 years. That’s insane. Bands aren’t around that long. Usually they like… choke on vomit, or get fat and lazy, or turn into some weird lounge act and then they play at the Emerald Queen Casino. Not Judas Priest. They have been destroying arenas across the Earth and still sell out massive crowds. I think they’re one of the few bands where you could see three generations of metalheads all rocking out to Painkiller live.

Redeemer of Souls is their 15th studio album. I’m not counting the Tim “Ripper” Owens albums. And it’s a step back to their roots after the hifalutin rock opera that was Nostradamus. While it’s not as balls out as, say, Screaming for Vengeance, it’s still a solid album and a great addition to 2014’s metal lineup.

The first track on the album, Dragonaut, is not a cover of the Sleep song of the same name. I found out of about this when a bar I frequent had a specialty drink called the Dragonaut. It’s a white Russian but they use a chai-infused vodka, the drink, not the song. So I asked if it was in prep for the new album and they got confused and said “only if it’s a cover of Sleep’s song.”

Anyway, Judas Priest’s version of Dragonaut starts with stormy sounds, dropping into a great guitar riff and the solid drumming you expect from a late-80’s era Priest track. The guitar solo is technical, tight, and does the awesome cut from one guitarist’s style to the other, one of my favorite moves in metal.

The title track has a bit of a One Shot at Glory vibe to it in terms of rhythm. Halford stays in a comfortable range for vocals on this track, sounding a bit similar to his work on Angel of Retribution or even Nostradamus. I guess after so many years of bombing out crazy screams for Painkiller or Screaming for Vengeance, your vocal chords might not be as pliable.

This is the debut album for their new guitarist, Richie Faulkner. Formerly of a few bands, including a stint with Christopher Lee, he’s a great addition to the band and fills out the sound nicely. Oh he played guitar on Steve Harris’s daughter’s band. I saw her open for Maiden in their Somewhere Back in Time tour. I don’t know how to follow up that statement.

VALHALLLLLLLLAAAAAAAAA. Halford attempts a couple screams on this track, and they’re alright, but it does sound a little… off. However, there is no better pairing than metal and Vikings. The dueling guitars in the intro definitely give me the impression this song could have the band synchronized guitar dancing. Kind of like in Breakin the Law, or pretty much every other Priest song ever. Also, Valhalla is where I belong. Or Valhalska.

Crossfire is a weird departure. A psychedelic-ish sounding track, it starts off with a bit of a Jimi Hendrix vibe before dropping into a rollicking blues track. It definitely stands out from the rest of the album, which might not be the best thing. I’d be interested to hear more blues rock from Priest, but maybe not in the middle of great tracks like March of the Damned or Sword of Damocles.

The album does close out with a ballad, which is cool if you like ballads. Beginning of the End covers what it is to be old or something, which I guess after 44 years they might be experts on the subject. Anyway, it’s a bit of a slow close to an otherwise fast Judas Priest album.

Overall, Redeemer of Souls might not have quite the same punch as Priest’s earlier work, but they still manage to put together a full album of good, solid metal. It’s a bit more guitar heavy than previous albums, but the solo work is great and I’m glad to hear it in there. I could do without the ballad, but that’s me. I’m not a fan of ballads.

Friday Morning Metal – Judas Priest – Redeemer of Souls

YES! YES! Y E S! Judas Priest is releasing a new album in July, Redeemer of Souls, and they just released the title track for our perusal. It’s a great track, solid new modern Judas Priest with some similarities to Hell Patrol. And the chord changes are perfect for the synchronized guitar poses that you know they’ll do live.

And the album art looks pretty awesome. Like a creepy archangel in a duster or something. Ready to kick ass and I guess redeem a soul or two.

Friday Morning Metal – 8-Bit Style

Powerglove, CarboHydroM, and the Minibosses are great bands that do metal/hard rock covers of 8-bit and 16-bit video game songs. Excite Bike, for instance. Or Contra. Well yesterday I stumbled into a terrific rabbit hole of 8-bit covers of metal songs. And now I want to play the video games that would have these songs, because I bet they’d be next to impossible (Hi Contra without the Konami code) and totally kickass.

Dethklok – Thunderhorse. Great boss fight music, like if the boss was in a helicopter or something and you were commandos shooting rockets and lasers at it.

Iron Maiden – Fear of the Dark. This one starts off slow, like an intro to a Castlevania almost.

Judas Priest – Painkiller. Double kick totally sounds like helicopter noises. They don’t even attempt to recreate Halford’s vocals, I don’t think 8-bit has a “Metal God” tone I guess.

Dragonforce – Through the Fire and Flames. All these songs would be kickass final battle songs.

Friday Morning Metal – Judas Priest – Painkiller – Rocksmith Bass

So I’m getting blisters and feeling like a spaz playing Rocksmith, generally having a great time. Then I decided to buy the Judas Priest Pack for it. Breakin the Law, Living After Midnight, and Painkiller. I tried to play Painkiller last night, fingerpicking because I apparently don’t like my arms. After sucking mightily, I checked out Youtube for people playing the song. It’s pretty awesome. Definitely gives a feel for how frenetic that song is.

Some day I’ll be able to do that. Maybe 2020.

Friday Morning Metal – Judas Priest – Breakin the Law

I’m really digging deep for this one. And why not, this is the 100th post. Judas Priest’s Breakin the Law is a masterpiece of the new wave of British heavy metal and a fantastic song if you’re learning guitar. That solo is pretty tricky, however.

The song is such an anthem that the last time I saw Judas Priest perform the song, Halford didn’t even sing. He just held the mic over the crowd and had all of us do it for him. It was pretty amazing, those screaming metal heads sounded kind of in tune.

As for the video, I didn’t know you could rob a bank with metal back in the early 80’s, but there you go.

Oh and here’s Beavis & Butthead doing it too: