There are few heavy metal bands that have managed to scale the heights that Judas Priest have during their 40 years plus career. Their presence and influence are at an all-time high as evidenced by the group's last studio album 'Firepower' reaching the highest US Billboard Top 200 chart position and peaking throughout the world - their 2010 Grammy Award win for 'Best Metal Performance' - being a VH1 Rock Honors recipient plus much more.
Judas Priest originally formed in the early '70s in Birmingham, England (an area that many feel birthed heavy metal). By 1974, longtime Priest members guitarist K.K. Downing and bassist Ian Hill welcomed singer Rob Halford into the fold - he was soon followed by the arrival of guitarist Glenn Tipton. It would be this nucleus of musicians (along with several different drummers over the years) that would soon go on to change the face of heavy metal. After a 'feeling out' period of a couple of albums — 1974's 'Rock Rolla' and 1976's 'Sad Wings of Destiny' — the Rob/Glenn/K.K./lan lineup truly hit their stride. The result was a quartet of albums that separated Priest from the rest of the hard rock pack — 1977's 'Sin After Sin' - 1978's 'Stained Class' and 'Hell Bent for Leather' and 1979's 'Unleashed In The East' which spawned such metal anthems as 'Sinner' - 'Diamonds and Rust' -'Hell Bent for Leather' and 'The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown)'. Also, Priest were one of the first metal bands to exclusively wear leather and studs — a look that began during this era and would eventually be embraced by metalheads throughout the world.
It could be said that Priest simply owned the '80s as they were second to none as far as pure metal goes — releasing such all-time classic albums as 1980's 'British Steel' - 1981's 'Point of Entry' - 1982's 'Screaming for Vengeance' and 1984's 'Defenders of the Faith'. Once more, these titles spawned countless enduring metal anthems including 'Breaking the Law' -'Living After Midnight' - 'Heading Out to the Highway' and 'You've Got Another Thing, Corning'. The '80s were also a decade where Priest became a global arena headliner, and also offered show-stopping sets at some of the world's biggest festivals including the first-ever 'Monsters of Rock' festival at Donington Park (1980) in the United Kingdom, the US Festival (1983) in the United States and Live Aid (1985) in the United States.
The remainder of the '80s saw Priest embrace more melodic hard rock sounds on 1986's 'Turbo' and 1988's 'Ram it Down' (in addition to their second live album 1987's 'Priest...Liver) before releasing arguably the heaviest release of their entire career - 1990's 'Painkiller' (which saw the arrival of Scott Travis on drums). Judas Priest were special guests on the 2004 Ozzfest appearing alongside Black Sabbath - before issuing 'Angel of Retribution' a year later.
2008 saw the release of the double-disc concept album, 'Nostradamus' which peaked at #11 on the Billboard Top 200 and a year later 'A Touch of Evil: Live' was issued (which led to the group's aforementioned Grammy Award win due to a killer rendition of the classic 'Dissident Aggressor').
In 2009 Priest began a celebration of the 30 year anniversary of the release of their classic 'British Steel' album, which included a tour that saw the group perform the album in its entirety, and was followed up by an expanded, double disc version of 'British Steer in 2010 plus a DVD of their live show.
In 2010 Downing left the band -fate stepped in and delivered the perfect replacement - British guitar player Richie Faulkner - he has blended into the band perfectly and is a great talent and an amazing showman who has helped to set stages on fire across the globe!
The band went from strength to strength - what with their American Idol finale appearance - release on DVD/BluRay of 'Epitaph' - filmed at the Hammersmith Apollo in the UK in 2012 - a new studio album in 2014 -'Redeemer of Souls' and theft epic live release 'Battle Cry" filmed at Wacken Festival in Germany in 2015 on CIDADVD/BluRay
Now, with "Firepower", their 18th studio album released in the spring of 2018, and a world tour which has followed suit, Judas Priest offer you an opportunity to experience the ultimate heavy metal concert. Start getting prepared to rock one more time with the incomparable Judas Priest!
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