Midlands’ metal legends Judas Priest proved that they are still more than worthy of their ‘Metal Gods’ signature, by putting on a show-stopping homecoming performance last night (26th Nov 2015) in Wolverhampton. Hailing from the West Midlands, the ‘Monsters Of Rock’ were appearing at the Civic Hall, as part of their current ‘Redeemer Of Souls’ British Tour.
With the atmosphere inside the venue palpable as the curtain emblazoned with the appropriate slogan ‘Welcome To The Home Of British Steel’ dropped, the ‘Defenders Of The Faith’ kicked off with ‘Dragonaut’ from latest album ‘Redeemer Of Souls’.
Going on to usher in a slew of classic tracks from a catalogue crammed with some of the defining cornerstones of heavy metal, it was clear that the band were on top form.
Playing to a packed house, the five-piece ripped through the likes of the atmospheric ‘Victim Of Changes’, a supercharged ‘Turbo Lover’ and the rarely-heard ‘Screaming For Vengeance’, before an audience that included many family and friends.
Speaking from the stage, singer Rob Halford – who is now based in Phoenix, Arizona – said; “It’s great to be back home again”, to the delight of the crowd. He continued: “You mean the world to us; this is our Priest family right here in front of us”.
Going on to talk about the current tour, the front man said: “We’ve been going around the world again, for a year and three months flying the flag of British heavy metal.”
Flying a flag of a very different sort – that of the Black Country, which was featured on bunting that flanked the stage – the iconic band went on to dazzle with blinding LCD backdrops. The high-energy show also saw Halford’s scene-stealing entrance on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle during ‘Hell Bent For Leather’ raise the roof.
Bringing the evening to a close with the pairing of ‘Painkiller’ and ‘Living After Midnight’, it was clear that the Midlands crowd were glad to see their boys – including founder members Glenn Tipton and Ian Hill – back in town.
Continuing on Saturday night (28th Nov) in Manchester, the ‘Redeemer Of Souls’ tour also sees Judas Priest play dates in Portsmouth and London on the British leg.
The band then heads for the continent, with the tour winding up in Germany on 17th Dec 2015.
JUDAS PRIEST 2015 U.K. TOUR DATES:
28th Nov – Manchester, Apollo
30th Nov – Portsmouth, Guildhall
1st Dec – London, Brixton Academy
First published on gigsandfestivals.com, 3 December 2015.