Wednesday, June 25, 2008


I like Judas Priest. I respect Judas Priest. They were the first metal band I got fanboy over and bought all of their albums from Turbo to previous. Their concert was the first show I ever went too without Mom and Pops.

But as I got older and more musically aware I constantly found myself going back over their albums asking myself, why in the hell did I like this so much? Musically it wasn't bad but I did notice they were never as elite as some of their peers even in the 80's. Hell I was on their side in high school during the infamous Iron Maiden vs. Judas Priest debates that would rage. What a sap.

So Nostradamus comes out and it turns out to be the cherry on top of a career with more ups and downs then a Six Flags roller coaster. On the surface what a great idea for Priest to make a concept album and a double cd at that. That'd be great if they had ever created any lyrically excellant songs to begin with. But they never really have. And the topic of this concept album really needed 2 cd's to cover? Iron Maiden could have done one song on him and it would have been more engaging and exciting then this whole album combined.

I guess the point of this rant is that I'm tired of the accolades that get heaped on an artist based solely on longevity and some notion over the years of greatness when it's really undeserved. Saxon was cheesy metal and became irrelevant years ago but somehow Priest has persevered . Their have only been two things Priest has been an innovator on, one being the leather and spikes(which no one really wears anymore except for Kerry King and Norwegian black metal bands)

And their use of twin lead guitars(which would have come about anyways even if they hadn't been first). Otherwise they have followed alot of trends themselves and failed at it. They tried the synth sound for Turbo and Ram it Down, guess what ZZ top already did that a year earlier with Afterburner. They tried the speed metal thing with Pain Killer and were mediocre at it compared to Megadeth and Slayer. Now we have this overblown mess of a cd, which has been done time and time again by other artists for years previous and done sooo much better.

Pop in Mind Crime, Scenes from a Memory, anything from Ayreon, hell even W.A.S.P's Crimson Idol, then put this in and tell me that it ranks up there with those. Even reading interviews for this leading up to the release made me wonder why they were REALLY doing this. Ian Hill was quoted in a interview somewhere that most of them knew virtually nothing about Nostradamus prior to writing and recording but they got into the project nonetheless. Soooo why make it? Because it sounds cool? Or just because it's something they had never done before.

I really wish they had packed it in a long time ago, because unlike bands like Overkill which got better from the 90's on, Priest has almost consistently been bad to mediocre during that same period but get notoriety while better bands are still mired in small clubs and lumped into 2nd stage festival shows. It really is a shame.

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