2019 will mark 50 years since Judas Priest formed in West Bromich a few ks from Birmingham. None of the founders are with the band but the three stalwarts Rob Halford, Ian Hill and Glenn Tipton had joined before the first album was released.
Believe it or not, this band took its name from a Bob Dylan song ‘The Ballad of Frankie Lee and Judas Priest’.
It is incredible witnessing a band with so much history showing acts half their age how it is done. Judas Priest took to the stage at Download immediately before headline act Slayer who would have been the sub-headliner under Ozzy Osbourne had he not got sick some weeks ago.
The Judas Priest set goes back to the first successful album, their third record ‘Sin After Sin’ (1977). While Judas Priest is still actively creating new music (and indeed Download was used as a showcase for five songs from the recent Firepower album), this crowd was into the iconic moments.
‘Breaking the Law’ closed the set and we had a spattering of their better-known tracks like ‘You’ve Got Another Thing Coming’, ‘Electric Eye’ and ‘Freewheel Burning’ but it was strange leaving out ‘Living After Midnight’, one of their more well-known songs.
I did seem to detect not all Halford screams seemed live. Occasionally the scream was there when the microphone was nowhere near the lips. I suspect for the 67-year old rock legend to maintain a sense of consistency the occasional pre-recorded yell is necessary. Considering Roger Waters pre-records some of his vocals, we can let Rob get away with that … in the interests of a better show.
— Noise11.com (@Noise11Tweets) March 11, 2019
Judas Priest, Download Melbourne, 11 March 2019
Firepower (from Firepower, 2018)
Running Wild (from Killing Machine, 1978)
Sinner (from Sin after Sin, 1977)
Lightning Strike (from Firepower, 2018)
Desert Plains (from Point of Entry, 1981)
No Surrender (from Firepower, 2018)
Turbo Lover (from Turbo, 1986)
Guardians (from Firepower, 2018)
Rising From Ruins (from Firepower, 2018)
Freewheel Burning (from Defenders of the Faith, 1984)
You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’ (from Screaming for Vengeance, 1982)
Hell Bent for Leather (from Killing Machine, 1978)
Painkiller (from Painkiller, 1990)
The Hellion (from Screaming for Vengeance, 1982)
Electric Eye (from Screaming for Vengeance, 1982)
Breaking the Law (from British Steel, 1980)