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Judas Priest

Judas Priest

Judas Priest is one of heavy metal’s most important bands — the ultimate defenders of the style for four decades running, through periods of both acclaim and scorn, and hard-ly any interruption along the way. Hailing from the same industrial metropolis as heavy metal forefathers Black Sabbath, Birmingham, England, Priest debuted in 1974 with ‘Rocka Rolla,’ to a modest reception; but steadily grew in prowess and prominence over the course of landmark albums like ‘Sad Wings of Destiny’ (1976), ‘Stained Class’ (1978), and ‘Hell Bent for Leather’ (1978). The latter also saw the group helping to define heavy metal’s visual iconography, largely based on vocalist Rob Halford’s penchant for metal-studded accessories and leather bondage gear, which, ironically, reflected his closeted gay lifestyle. Come 1980’s pivotal ‘British Steel’ LP, a slightly more accessible metal sound helped Judas Priest turn a commercial corner in America, and ensuing hit albums like ‘Screaming for Vengeance’ (1982), ‘Defenders of the Faith’ (1984) and ‘Turbo’ (1986) saw them conquer even the once elusive radio waves, to say nothing of MTV. Then, just as their creativity and relevance appeared to be waning near the close of the decade, Priest stunned all cynics by bouncing back with one of their best and fiercest albums in 1990’s ‘Painkiller.’ The group appeared poised to flourish throughout the ‘90s until Halford surprisingly left the band to pursue other musical projects, including Fight and 2ow. Priest’s remaining members, guitarists Glenn Tipton and K.K. Down-ing, bassist Ian Hill and recently recruited drummer Scott Travis waited nearly five years for Halford, but finally carried on with a new singer — former tribute band phenom Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens — and released two albums to mixed reviews. Then, following the example set a few years earlier by fellow British metal gods, Iron Maiden, Halford and Priest reunited for 2003’s ‘Angel of Retribution’ and resumed their all-conquering ways — even surviving Downing’s retirement in 2012 with the help of new guitarist, Richie Faulkner. In sum, when all is said and done Judas Priest will likely figure among the all-time greats in heavy metal history, alongside Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden and Metallica.

Selected Discography: ‘Sad Wings of Destiny’ (1976), ‘Stained Class’ (1978), ‘British Steel’ (1980), ‘Screaming for Vengeance’ (1982), ‘Painkiller’ (1990) Related Artists: Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, Rob Halford, Fight, Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens Further Reading: You Think You Know Judas Priest; 10 Best Judas Priest Songs Read More: Judas Priest News

Avenged Sevenfold, Judas Priest, Def Leppard + Alice Cooper to Headline 2015 Rock USA Festival

Theo Wargo / Ethan Miller / David Becker, Getty Images
Theo Wargo / Ethan Miller / David Becker, Getty Images

Avenged Sevenfold, Judas Priest, Def Leppard and Alice Cooper have been announced as the headliners for this summer’s Rock USA in Oshkosh, Wis.

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Judas Priest’s Rob Halford on ‘Defenders of the Faith’ Reissue, Spirituality + More

Judas Priest's Rob Halford
Mat Hayward, Getty Images

Judas Priest's Rob Halford speaks about the Defenders of the Faith reissue, his personal views on spirituality and much more.

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Filed Under: , Category: Exclusive, Interviews, Metal, News

Judas Priest Talk ‘Defenders of the Faith’ 30th Anniversary Reissue + Classic Track ‘Love Bites’

Judas Priest
Epic / Columbia

We've got an exclusive clip of Judas Priest discussing 'Defenders of the Faith' and one of its most legendary tracks, 'Love Bites.'

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Filed Under: Category: Exclusive, Metal, News, Videos

Judas Priest’s Rob Halford Contemplates Reviving His Band Fight

Rob Halford
Ethan Miller, Getty Images

Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford says he would be open to reviving his '90s outfit, Fight.

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Filed Under: , , Category: Metal, News

Megadeth’s David Ellefson Credits Van Halen, Styx + Judas Priest for Changing His Life

David Ellefson
Ethan Miller, Getty Images

David Ellefson is one of metal top bassists, and he credits Van Halen, Styx and Judas Priest for showing him the way.

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Judas Priest Songs Get Lullaby Treatment From Twinkle Twinkle Little Rock Star

Judas Priest
Spencer Kaufman, Loudwire

Judas Priest are the latest subject of the Twinkle Twinkle Little Rock Star lullaby series.

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Filed Under: Category: Metal, New Albums, News, Videos

Kids React to Judas Priest’s ‘Redeemer of Souls’

Kids That Rock Judas Priest
Loudwire

A cavalcade of juveniles interpret the lyrics to Judas Priest's 'Redeemer of Souls' and talk about what the Redeemer would look like, where he may live + more.

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Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest + Motorhead to Play 2015 ‘Monsters Tour’ Date in Brazil

Ozzy Osbourne / Rob Halford / Lemmy Kilmister
Anthony Harvey / Ethan Miller / Jason Kempin, Getty Images

Ozzy Osbourne, Judas Priest and Motorhead have been confirmed to play the first 'Monsters Tour' date in Porto Alegre, Brazil this coming April.

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Iron Maiden + Judas Priest Classics Get Mashed Up for ‘Riding on the Powerslave’

Bruce Dickinson / Rob Halford
Karl Walter / Ethan Miller, Getty Images

'Riding on the Powerslave' uses the voice of Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson from 'Powerslave' and the instrumentals from Judas Priest's 'Riding on the Wind.'

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Filed Under: , Category: Metal, News, Songs, Videos

Judas Priest + Steel Panther Perform ‘Living After Midnight’ at Tour Closer

Judas Priest Steel Panther
Ethan Miller / Stephan Lovekin, Getty Images

Judas Priest and Steel Panther wrapped up their tour in grand fashion last month by teaming up for a rocking version of ‘Living After Midnight.’

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Filed Under: , Category: Concerts, Metal, News

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