Posts Tagged “British Steel”

KK: no regrets

Former Judas Priest guitarist and founding member KK Downing, who sensationally left the band back in 2011, has elaborated on his decision to leave the heavy metal legends, revealing that it wasn’t his own career that he felt was coming to a close…

“I’ll never get away from this ‘retirement’ thing. What happened was that I quit,” he tells The Midlands Rocks. “‘Retired’ implies that I am not physically able to do it. I am able to do it, but I didn’t want to do it; I just wasn’t enjoying it any more. A lot of things had changed. I think I counted about thirty reasons why I didn’t want to do it at the time, and that’s an awful lot of reasons.

“In all honesty I think that in so many respects it had run its course. If you’re part of a songwriting team you get the recognition and reward for creating something. But for me Priest became about going out and playing live and replicating exactly what people had enjoyed ten, twenty or thirty years ago.

KK with Judas Priest

“The fans would be just as happy if they could see us take them on a walk down memory lane – I think that’s what people enjoy most. And I understand that, because if I could go out now and see Eric Clapton with Cream then I would be the happiest person in the world.”

“If the industry was still healthy and people still had to spend their hard-earned money buying a record, it would be different.

“We used to buy an album and think, ‘Well it’s not that good, but I’ll play it a million times and I’m sure I’ll get into it.’ Now it doesn’t get a second chance.

“In the past there was always the opportunity to create a record like The Dark Side Of The Moon orBritish Steel or Back In Black that would be indelible, and people will always come back to. I think that opportunity has gone now – it would take a miracle for one of those to happen again.”

Meanwhile, Judas Priest look set to release a new album next year, despite many assuming they’d call it quits after their Epitaph “farewell”. tour

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This Saturday (April 20), many record shops and labels around the world will be participating in Record Store Day. We’ve trawled through teh interwebz to find the very best stuff that’s going down this weekend….

Bring Me: taking over in 2013

Bring Me The Horizon release a special, limited edition 10” vinyl of Hammer-certified massive banger Sleepwalking, with only 500 copies made. Oversized sausage not included, but the internet bitching almost certainly is.

Punk legends The Sex Pistols have a very special 7” picture disc available for RSD, comprising a rare 1977 mix of Pretty Vacant along with a 2008 live country and western version of the same song. Johnny Rotten described it as “putting the cunt into country”. We won’t argue.

Testament: well thrashy

Nuclear Blast Records are putting out a whole raft of goodness, including vinyl releases exclusive to the UK from Anthrax, Testament, Amorphis and Overkill, and a free (that’s FREE) sampler including Soilwork, Hypocrisy, Avantasia and a bunch of other ace bands. You can see Nuclear Blast bands talk about why vinyl rules here:

The Algorithm: ALL THE GENRES!!!111one

Basick Records’ awesome/mental stars Chimp Spanner, The Algorithm, Skyharbor and Uneven Structure each have a limited edition double disc vinyl album out. 500 copies each only, so get yours quick.

Napalm Death

Earache Records are putting out a loud of limited goodies, the highlight of which is the world’s shortest ever album. 13 tracks from grind gods like Napalm Death, Brutal Truth and Insect Warfare included. So that’s all of 83 seconds running time, then. Reign In Blood suddenly seems like a prog epic.


The metal gods themselves, Judas Priest, are putting out a special splatter LP of British Steel. You don’t need more selling than that, right? It’s British fucking Steel. Same goes for Motörhead’s Overkill and Bomber, which also have special splatter releases, and Slayer’s special versions of Hell Awaits and Show No Mercy. It’s fucking Motörhead and SLAY-ER! SLAY-ER!

Prog god Steven Wilson is releasing a heavyweight picture disc 12” with demo versions of Luminol and The Watchmaker from latest masterpiece The Raven That Refused To Sing (And Other Stories). Nothing says “Record Store Day” like two terrifying ghost stories.

Killswitch Engage: Back on form

If you don’t love Holy Diver by Dio, you’re ill and should seek urgent medical attention. Killswitch Engage’s cover of it was badass too. And on Record Store Day, you can get both versions on a limited edition 7” vinyl. If you want one, you’ll have to get in the queue behind everyone at Hammer.

Cannibal Corpse: Well it ain’t Barry fucking Manilow, is it?

No one does picture discs like Cannibal Corpse. So a revolting one for death metal classic Butchered At Birth (which is probably banned in half of the world) is a perfect release for Record Store Day. Go pick up some A-grade gore before it’s sold out/censored.


In one of the more unusual releases for the day, Baroness main man and artist extraordinaire John Baizley, Neurosis geniuses Steve Von Till and Scott Kelly, and Nate Hall from US Christmas continue to explore the work of country singer/songwriter Townes Van Zandt with a special 10”. It’s utterly wonderful.

Avenged Sevenfold: back in 2013!

Avenged Sevenfold have two vinyls out, one picture disc with Carry On from Call Of Duty: Black Ops II, and a vinyl/DVD package of their Diamonds In The Rough B-sides and rarities compilation, and their 2008 filmed Live In The LBC show. A7X fans, get down to your indie record store.


Bolt Thrower: special splatter version of debut album In Battle There Is No Law!

 Botch: Remastered double LP of debut album American Nervoso

Burzum: special splatter versions of the first four albums (Aske EP included on Burzum)

Cult Of Luna: special white vinyl with grey and black splatter of monstrous new album Vertikal

Killing Joke: Mini-compilation of their first single Nervous System, as well as Pandemonium and latest single Corporate Elect

Napalm Death: 10” of Leaders Not Followers and the Insect Warfare split 7”

Opeth: special half-white, half-grey LP of Morningrise

Poison Idea: red 7” release of the Filthkick EP

To find out where you can grab yourself some of these wonderful goodies and much, much more, go look up the participating stores near you by heading to

Article by Tom Dare

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Judas PriestScreaming For Vengeance 30th Anniversary Edition
Columbia Records/Legacy
Ray Van Horn, Jr.

There’s no question why Screaming For Vengeance should appear in your music library.  If you’re metal, this album should’ve been one of the first you ever came into contact with.  It’s mandatory.  Like the first Black Sabbath album, like Blue Oyster Cult’s Tyranny and Mutation, like Kiss’ Destroyer, like Maiden’s Number of the Beast and like Metallica’s Master of Puppets, Screaming For Vengeance represents a pivotal moment in heavy metal music.  It’s biblical to this genre and it’s symbolic of metal at its most symbiotic.  It just is.

Judas Priest are the legends they are for a reason and while British Steel is regarded by many as their finest work, Sad Wings of Destiny their most artistic and Point of Entry their most underrated, their esteemed reputation comes down to 1982 and the bombastic Screaming For Vengeance.  Stained Class and Hell Bent For Leather are absolute masterpieces for Priest as well, but all that came before Screaming For Vengeance can be viewed as evolutionary milestones culminating in one of the fiercest and most majestic slabs of all-time.

It’s a case of preaching to the choir if you’re a seasoned metal fan, but is there anything in the entire cosmos of heavy music that summons the outer regions of the unknown into harmony with our own  than “The Hellion?”  There has never been nor will there ever be a more perfect intro to a metal album than this.  The opening shreds of Slayer’s “Angel of Death” come relatively close.  Ditto for the lavish acoustic-meets-electric symposium of Metallica’s “Battery.”  You hear those, you’re pumped up for what comes next, sure.  “The Hellion,” however?  Nothing like it.  It is for metal culture, the equivalent of Beethoven’s Fifth and Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries.”  Distasteful as it was to find “The Hellion” pounding within a car commercial, the way that ad was set up with the explosive gala and stacked amplitude to recreate a Priest concert around their product, you had to forgive them.  At least they had the savvy choose the mightiest metal chops there ever was for a disguised glittering testimonial.

Thirty years it’s been since Judas Priest turned Screaming For Vengeance loose upon us and three decades later, it remains one of the heaviest audile experiences you’ll ever hear.  The title track alone set a precedent for metal music by picking up the pace and the aggression.  Remember, most groups weren’t playing this fast in 1982.  “Screaming For Vengeance” and Priest’s “Freewheel Burning” from their subsequent Defenders of the Faith album are the foundation blocks of thrash, alongside Iron Maiden’s “Invaders,” “Gangland” and “Run to the Hills.” 

Thirty years later, “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming” is the rare exception of accessibility that hasn’t grown sour.  That cut still kicks and though it’s discomforting to see yuppies toss up horns, “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming” is a bonding agent proving why Priest became immediate icons of the arena from this point forward in their careers.

“Devil’s Child” remains one of the meanest-sounding tunes Judas Priest ever recorded, while “Riding On the Wind” and of course the dystopian mini-epic “Electric Eye” remain obligatory for fans and for Priest themselves onstage.  The Orwellian “Electric Eye” propagated paranoia and fantastical fear which still intimidates now in the desensitized, dumb-downed age of Big Brother.  We snarl along with the Metal God, Rob Halford about being perpetual and keeping our country clean, but put into proper context, that was some scary shit Priest had touched on.  If a government took it upon itself to cleanse its borders in Hitler-esque fashion, we’ll one day think back on “Electric Eye” as the grotesque horror story it is.  For now, the song is so much of an ass-kicker, we ride into glory with Judas Priest and go bonkers with it. 

For the thirtieth anniversary of Screaming For Vengeance’s release, Columbia Records remasters this golden nugget with a handful of live tracks and the bonus track “Prisoner of Your Eyes,” plus a DVD featuring Judas Priest’s reknowned performance at the 1983 US Festival in San Bernardino, California.  The remix of Screaming For Vengeance is crisp but the original source was so powerful even the original analog stands up to the current rewash.  The quasi ballad “Prisoner of Your Eyes” should be familiar to diehards as Rob Halford has been known to bring it out in his solo shows.  It previously made an appearance on his Live Insurrection album.

Thus the major selling point to this anniversary edition is the US Festival show.  As rad as the 1982 concert at the Mid South Coliseum contained in Priest’s Metalogy box set is, the US Festival gig shows much of the Screaming For Vengeance selections at full polish.  Playing before 300,000 fans in the four day festival, it’s impressive to see so many people even in 1982 pumping fists and going wild for a heavy metal band.  “Electric Eye” comes off as a slow cooker for the band and Rob Halford skulks onstage from behind the amps and Dave Holland’s massive drum riser to deliver the goods in sinister fashion.  The band picks up with “Riding On the Wind” but hits full stride four songs in with “Metal Gods.”  Halford comes alive with his full vocal range while KK Downing and Glenn Tipton feed off of his energy.  Ian Hill bobs back in forth at amp’s edge as he’s always done (as signature for him as Angus Young’s ceaseless up and down knee jacking), while Dave Holland, a forgotten cog in the Priest machine, looks half frightened and half euphoric from his mount overtop the survey of humanity before him. 

Holland has the best seat in the house and so do you with this DVD.  Though it’s amusing watching the camera operators focus on the wrong guitarists during the first few solos, eventually everything hums and the US Festival performance lives up to its reputation.  Priest whips out their olden year standards, “Victim of Changes,” “Diamonds and Rust” and “The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown”) and they rank amongst the highlights of this show.  “Screaming For Vengeance” is just as thunderous here as the studio version, but none of it seems wholly fulfilling until Rob Halford manifests on his Harley during “Hell Bent For Leather.”  Oh, hell to the yes.

So on the wings of a screaming metallic falcon, have another go with an immortal album, if not for your first time.  If this is your first time coming to Screaming For Vengeance, you are to be envied because this is a genuine experience you’re about to confront.  You’ll take the pain and the pleasure from Screaming For Vengeance and chances are, you’ll rank this album deservedly high on your personal meter as the rest of us have.

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Steel Panther have posted a sneak peek at their much anticipated debut DVD ‘The British Invasion’.

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Wymer Publishing has set a September 12 release date for “Rock Landmarks: Judas Priest’s British Steel”.

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Every Tuesday I’ll be posting my top 10 albums from metal history, starting with 1980.  In looking at the top 10 of 1980 it’s amazing at how many of these bands are still around today and making music. Over 30 years later many of them are still releasing albums and touring.  Some people consider 1980 the best year ever for metal, and with classics like British Steel, Blizzard Of Ozz and Heaven And Hell all released that year, a strong argument can be made.  Check out my list of the best metal albums released in 1980.

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JUDAS PRIEST frontman Rob Halford is featured on this week’s
edition of the “In The Studio” show.

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North American syndicated Rock radio show InTheStudio celebrates one of Metal’s landmark albums JUDAS PRIEST’s  British Steel.  Show producer/host Redbeard talks with lead singer Rob…

Read the rest of this article at and tune in to Braingell Radio!

Provided by Braingell Radio

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As Judas Priest will be hitting the road this year for their reported final tour, it’s appropriate to wander back to their 1977 masterwork, Sin After Sin.

Sin After Sin was, at one time, an acquired taste in Priest’s catalog. While it remains one of their all-time heaviest and most polished recordings, most fans picked up with the band either via British Steel and Hell Bent For Leather or Screaming for Vengeance and Defenders of the Faith. Those albums are slicker, louder and filled with iconic heavy metal classics. Sin After Sin is iconic itself, but you really had to dig backwards when learning the history of metal in order to appreciate their grinding “Dissident Aggressor” (made popular by benefit of Slayer’s cover) and the banging “Sinner,” “Race With the Devil” and “Starbreaker.”

A bit more refined than the over-the-top bludgeoning and tunefulness of their later work, Sin After Sin is a portal into a heavy metal wonderland, in sound by “Last Rose of Summer” and visually by the album’s escapist artwork. I have a great fondness for a lot of the older, detailed paintings gracing Judas Priest’s albums, in particular for Sad Wings of Destiny, Rocka Rolla and the Hero Hero compilation. I’m most fond, however, of the minimalist copier paper trail to infinitum found on Point of Entry. As a writer, that triggers my neurons and sends them scampering in search of that elusive vanishing point.

Yet the Sin After Sin album cover may provoke the most imagination of any of Priest’s albums. I think of Heavy Metal the magazine, I think of Arthur’s fadeout in Excalibur and I think of lust and desire, depicted in the abstract forms found at the sepulchure’s portal on this cover. One must deal with temptation from both sides when approaching the tomb, which really strikes my fancy.

Seduction and damnation await all who enter, and yet the Sin After Sin cover makes you want to see more, particularly to see if there’s a payout to the suggested sex by the translucent girl parting her legs to the side. What’s she hiding between her thighs? Kind of reminds you of an installment of Den from the pages of Heavy Metal, yes? With the devil obscura towards panel left, you get the feeling there’s pain coming with the pleasure, woe be to your genitalia…

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JUDAS PRIEST frontman Rob Halford will guest on the “In The Studio” show during the week of February 14, 2011.

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