Judas Priest turns 50. The British band arrives in Quebec with a tour in which they take up the essentials and even their first album, released in 1974.
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A few hours before taking the stage in Nashville on March 23, singer Rob Halford is relaxed and chatty.
“The tour is amazing, fantastic and absolutely sensational. It is a great joy and a great honor to continue here and celebrate 50 years of heavy metal. We feel great pride. It is jubilant”, launched the 70-year-old high priest of this musical genre.
For Halford, the fans who are at the event allow the Birmingham formation to live on.
“We have the best fans in the world. This is what allows the blood to circulate through the veins of Judas Priest ”, he pointed out, during an interview via the Zoom platform.
Halford clarifies that Judas Priest never rests on its laurels.
“We work hard. There are no other ways to be successful. We just accept what’s best. It’s about the quality of the music and the albums. It has to be good,” he explained.
The singer indicates that the choice of songs, with 18 albums on the clock, was not easy to do for this anniversary tour that will make a stop on Sunday at the Videotron Center and on Monday at Place Bell, in Laval.
“It’s like going to a great French restaurant and wanting to eat everything on the menu. Everyone had ideas and we put them in a hat. We try to do our best and focus on albums, decades, be dynamic and develop in the right way. goes from rock rolla for Firepowerand it works,” he said.
We can see, on YouTube, a clip where the formation performs this piece in the BBC studios in 1972.
“We wrote that when we started and it still works in 2022. rock rolla It’s a great example of a song that made a connection between the fans and the band,” said the singer.
The album british steelreleased in the spring of 1980, in which we find the Break the law, live after midnight, metal gods, Grinder Y Unitedallowed the formation to settle down and make its place.
“We had given many shows and traveled millions of miles. It was the fruit of ten years of work. Then we sail from album to album, tour to tour and show to show. You have to put effort and energy into it. You need variety and you also have to take risks, be adventurous and challenge yourself. I believe, and I’m not saying this to brag, that we have this ability to reach people,” he said.
The singer returns to this fun idea, which was abandoned, of going on tour with only one guitarist. Fans reacted negatively.
“It was stupid. I don’t know how anyone thought it could be a good idea. We’re going to put it down to old age and a two-minute insanity,” he laughed.
one last album
Following this tour, which will end in the summer of 2023, Rob Halford, Ian Hill, Glenn Tipton, Richie Hawkins and Scott Travis will enter the studio to complete the 19me training album.
“Then we’ll release the album and hit the road again. This work will be good, strong, powerful and metallic. We didn’t expect Firepower to be so well received and we have to build on that,” she said.
Rob Halford is aware, at 70 years old, that the clock is ticking against him. Judas Priest’s next album could be their last.
“Age doesn’t matter. It’s more the physicality that’s hard. I’m not 20 anymore. It’s frustrating for me as a singer. Everyone is very consistent, but my voice sometimes doesn’t always want to collaborate. The fans know I’m doing it.” The best I can. It’s not easy,” he admitted, very humbly, a few minutes before tea time.
Rob Halford admits to experiencing a brief moment of nervousness before giving the final shout of Victim of changes.
“Hopefully, at that point, I’ll be able to find the note and make the note and something will come out of my vocal cords,” he said.
The American band Queensrÿche, without singer Geoff Tate, will act as opening act for Judas Priest.