DVD Reviews

Judas Priest: Epitaph DVD Review

judas priest_epitaph_cover new

Released by: Sony Legacy Recordings

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: Heavy Metal

Links: http://judaspriest.com/

 

Line Up:

Rob Halford – vocals

Glenn Tipton – guitar

Richie Faulkner – guitar

Ian Hill – bass

Scott Travis – drums

 

Tracklist:

01. Battle Hymn

02. Rapid Fire

03. Metal Gods

04. Heading Out To The Highway

05. Judas Rising

06. Starbreaker

07. Victim Of Changes

08. Never Satisfied

09. Diamonds And Rust

10. Prophecy

11. Night Crawler

12. Turbo Lover

13. Beyond The Realms Of Death

14. The Sentinel

15. Blood Red Skies

16. The Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown)

17. Breaking The Law

18. Painkiller

19. The Hellion

20. Electric Eye

21. Hell Bent For Leather

22. You’ve Got Another Thing Coming

23. Living After Midnight

 

What do you do if you’re a Heavy Metal icon and wish to say your final goodbyes to all your faithful fans because you will soon be ending your worlds tours and saying sayonara to the grueling life of touring on the road? Well you give your metal fans what they deserve, and that is a career retrospect of your legendary discography with at least one song from each of your 14 studio albums of course. Judas Priest returns to their prolific live stage presence delivering an iconic performance recorded live on the 26th of May in the famous London Hammersmith Apollo.

The Epitaph World Tour brought on board newcomer and the replacement for the departing K.K Downing who cited “differences with the band and management and a breakdown in their relationship” as the culprit for his departure, not easy shoes to fill considering Faulkner came over from Lauren Harris band; the daughter of Iron Maiden’s legendary bassist as well as  having worked with the band Voodoo Six. Needless to say Richie does more then hold his own on this performance. Not only does his charisma energize the band’s live presence, but his guitar playing is on par with the band’s overall vibe, and the band’s conventional classic heavy metal sound. I could imagine it wasn’t easy to have to master all these classic songs from Priest’s back catalog, but he does a great job regardless.

The Metal God himself Rob Halford still has it, yeah I know hes in his 60’s with a noticeable limp on stage and a bit weak in the knees as  can be expected from someone he’s age, but I’ll be damn if this man is not a super hero metal god, he’s vibrato is still alive and well and he’s screams hit the spot on such JP staples the likes of  “Victim of Changes” (which by the way delivers one of the best renditions ever for this song live”, and “Beyond The Realms of Death” another classic Priest cut. I read some other early reviews on this package and people complaining on how he’s not singing as much and letting the crowd take over more? An abomination observation to someone who has stood the test of time not only literally but figuratively. Halford is a road warrior he will keep plowing till he can’t no more and this package does nothing to disprove this theory.

Both Glenn Tipton with his stoic personality but killer riffs as well as Ian Hill assault stomping on the bass, throw it down with everlasting metal class and precision. Some more cuts continue the trip through time with some of my personal favorites JP tunes when “The Sentinel” and “Nightcrawler” both come storming through. Faulkner delivers the goods on the tasty solo trade off in The Sentinel. Halford resurrects himself in a gold robe for the classic “Prophecy” from the “Nostradamus” record, and keep things fresh with the live Judas Priest  favorite “The Green Manalishi (With the Two Pronged Crown)”. “Painkiller” the title track from their piercing 1990 masterpiece is always a real treat as Halford just earsplits the listener and the live audience with pure metal intervention and his stentorian voice.

Not much is ever said about drummer Scott Travis, but the guy has fit in quite well with Priest and does an underrated job on the battery. The live stage hits on all notes as each song shows a cover art from their respected album in the background, and with a cool display of lasers and Pyro Technics, Judas delivers one of their best live performances ever recorded live for all fans to enjoy.

More JP classics close the night with resourcefulness from these improbable legends, as they empty the set with “Hell Bent for Leather”, Electric Eye” and “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming”, ending with one of Judas favorite live songs in “Living After Midnight”. A great night capturing a career spanning performance; one to surely please long time and newer fans of the band.

For years the guys have kept the  ball and chain rolling keeping the metal flame alive and well, and even with the recent semi retirement from Downing, the guys have found new grasp of air in Faulkner as he seems to be enjoying himself live as he’s seen interacting wit the fans, and why would you not? You get to play with living metal legends. From what Rob Halford has said recently this new DVD will precede the new Judas Priest album that is coming later this year, and of recently also washing away some of the fears of long time fans he has said that Priest is not done touring just taking their time between gigs and not launching back to back world tours; understandably so as they are getting up there with age. So no this won’t be the last time you hear or see Judas Priest live but it’s sure as hell is the last time you watch a great live performance encompassing from a long time career retrospect. One of their best live performances captured on film and one you should look into purchasing with ease!!!

 

Written by Denys

Ratings    Denys    9/10

 

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