Judas Priest have released the first audio sample for their forthcoming studio effort, Firepower, which is scheduled to hit shelves next March. The brief sneak peek to the record's title track can be heard above and, while it's not much at just 15 seconds in length, hints at the expected ferocity from the U.K. metal legends.

In addition to the ripping few seconds we get of "Firepower" comes the artwork for the highly anticipated 2018 record. Priest's discography boasts some of the most iconic album covers in metal's sacred halls and, much like in the past, this one features some sort of mechanized warrior, calling to mind bits of Screaming for Vengeance, Defenders of the Faith and Angel of Retribution.

Next year also has the potential to be an even bigger year for Priest as they've been nominated for induction in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The long overdue honor would hopefully lead "It is important for lots of reasons," Rob Halford told Full Metal Jackie when commenting on the Rock Hall, going on," but primarily to have the opportunity — firstly to be nominated is a thrill, but just simply seeing metal being talked about globally because the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame denotes an American institution that has global reach. So it’s a great ceremony celebrating those two words, heavy metal, was fantastic when the announcement was made. It made everyone kind of lift their heads up and think about not only Priest but metal in the broadest sense of the word."

Last month, Judas Priest announced the North American leg of the Firepower tour, which kicks of March 13 in Wilkes-Barre, Penn. and treks across the U.S. and Canada on a month-and-a-half long run concluding in San Antonio, Texas on May 1. The full list of shows can be found here.

Judas Priest Firepower Album Art

Judas Priest
Judas Priest

Judas Priest Albums Ranked

10 Amazing Rob Halford High Screams

More From Loudwire