JUDAS PRIEST, the heavy metal legends, are bringing their career to a close with a farewell world tour: ‘The EPITAPH Tour’.
Formed in 1971 by the guitarist Kenneth Keith Downing and the bassist Ian Hill, Judas Priest were part of the celebrated NWOBHM (New Wave of British Heavy Metal). After several changes of drummer and singer, Judas Priest found a certain stability in 1973 with the arrival of John Hinch on drums and Rob Halford (brother-in-law of Ian Hill) on vocals. The following year the band welcomed a second guitarist on board in the shape of Glenn Tipton and released their first album, Rocka Rolla. Judas Priest made their breakthrough in 1977 with Sin After Sin, an album produced by Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover. This album remains one of the band’s finest moments. Following up their success, the band released their first live album, Unleashed In The East (1979). A string of successful albums followed, including British Steel (1980), Point of Entry (1981), Defender of The Faith (1984) and Turbo (1986). In 1990, Priest updated their repertoire with the pumped up, cult album Painkiller. After Rob Halford left the band, Judas Priest went quiet until 1996. In 2003, Rob returned to Priest and the band came once again to the fore in 2005 with Angel of Retribution and a world tour. Their latest album Nostradamus was released in 2008.
The last time they played in the capital in March 2009, the gig was sold out, reflecting the loyalty of their fans, who have rebaptised them the Gods of Metal.