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L.A. Beat

Judas Priest shows a lot of “Firepower” at Lethbridge show

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 Though the bassist  is the only  original member and the voice himself, Rob Halford, I had to check out  Judas Priest at the Enmax Centre, Monday, June 10 playing one of the loudest shows I have heard.
 They brought the metal, the duelling lead guitars, big riffs and Halford’s eardrum piercing shrieks, which were all the more impressive considering he’s 70 years old and was just recovering from  bronchitis. Unfortunately Uriah Heep had to cancel due to  a serious  illness  requiring their singer to be hospitalized.
 I  feel I should be listening for more Judas Priest. I didn’t  recognize most of their songs. They opened with a new song “Necromancer,”  from the new CD “Firepower,” featuring Halford dressed in a vibrant purple cloak and wielding a staff. One of the guitarists sported reflective aviator sunglasses, which I wished I’d brought to block out seizure  inducing strobe lights and which were really starting to annoy me.
“The Sentinel,” was an early highlight as was  “Heading Out To the Highway.”

 Halford stalked up and down the stage and off to don a variety of different leather studded trench coats and jackets.
 Despite the strobes, they had an impressive multi-media show featuring  graphics of Robocops, planets and asteroids for one of the few slower songs, Viking war ships and even some old images of the original band members and fans. There was also a disturbing one featuring medieval torture images  interspersed with a cawing raven which made me want to track down the inventor of the strobe light. That song, “Traitor’s Gate,” from their latest CD “Firepower” was a highlight as was the catchy as hell “No Surrender” also from “Firepower.”

 They saved the classics until the end of the night. Halford, with a shaved head and silver goatee,  left the stage during one of many duelling lead guitar breaks from  Richie Faulkner and Andy Sneap and returned with his flame embossed  motorcycle for “Hell Bent  For Leather,” which he bestrode as he sang.  Above him flashed images of an array of motorcycles , bikers and bike races.
 They followed that up with arguable their best known song “ Breaking the Law,” and wound up the encore with “Living After Midnight.” I was surprised they didn’t play “Turbo Lover,” but especially surprised not to hear “You Got Another Thing Coming.”
 They had a decent crowd, but I wasn’t expecting to see as many empty seats. But the ones who were there were into it, banging their heads and singing along.
 Halford’s voice was all the more impressive as he not only hit those excruciating high notes, but also tempered it for some really impressive melodies.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Wednesday, 19 June 2019 08:45 )  
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