Considering the roots of speed and thrash metal can be traced back to the UK with bands like Venom and Motörhead, it was the American and European acts that enjoyed the most success during the mid-late eighties. The Big Four were selling records by the bucketload, Germany had its very own “Teutonic Trio” (which would itself eventually expand to a foursome), and even Canada and South America were producing top-quality acts.
With the heart attack suffered by frontman Biff Byford back in September 2019 and the global pandemic which followed shortly after, NWOBHM legends Saxon have had a rough old ride the last couple of years. Therefore, Carpe Diem(Silver Lining Music) – translated from Latin into English as “sieze the day” – stands not only as an album title but as a clear and heartfelt message to all.
In a strange turn of events, Judas Priest has announced that Andy Sneap, who has spent several years touring with the band live, will in fact stay with the band and continue to perform live on tour. Glenn Tipton will continue to occasionally appear with the band as well, when possible. This is a reversal after the iconic two-guitar sound band decided to continue as a four piece, with Rob Halford calling Sneap to dismiss him on New Year’s day. Sneap responded by admitted to being disappointed, and the fanbase and media definitely reacted as well. Priest’s rescheduled 50 Years of Heavy Metal tour kicks off soon.
With a solo career that is now going over two decades strong, Blaze Bayley shows no signs of slowing down with his tenth full-length album. While War Within Me(Blaze Bayley Records) is an inevitable step back from the Infinite Entanglement trilogy that he released through the late 2010s, this has more to do with the sense of scale than any sort of quality concerns. If anything, the album is essentially a fun look back on everything that Blaze has accomplished thus far.
With only guitarist Wolf Hoffmann remaining from the original classic Accept line-up you could be forgiven for assuming this might eventually result in a decline in quality. And you may end up being proven right. Just not yet.
Judas Priest is celebrating their 50th anniversary this year with a world tour coming to the US in the fall. The 50 Heavy Metal Years Tour will also feature Sabaton as openers and is being fueled by the highest-charting album of Priest’s career ‘Firepower’ which peaked at #5 on the Billboard 200. Judas Priest originally formed in 1970 in Birmingham, England (an area that many feel birthed heavy metal). The original nucleus of musicians – Rob Halford, Glenn Tipton, KK Downing and Ian Hill (along with several different drummers over the years) would go on to change the face of heavy metal. The band has made some of the greatest albums in music history. Judas Priest’s lineup also includes Scott Travis on drums, and Richie Faulkner on lead guitar. Andy Sneap has been touring with the band on rhythm and lead guitar since 2018. In 2017 (and again in 2019) Their latest studio album Firepower (produced by Sneap and Tom Allom) which received global success and critical acclaim and released via Epic Records in 2018. The band was nominated for the 2020 Rock And Roll Hall of Fame. Continue reading →
Testament will release their highly anticipated new album Titans of Creation, which will see its release April 3rd via their long-time label Nuclear Blast. The band recorded with their frequent collaborator’s producer Juan Urteaga and mixed by Andy Sneap, with artwork by the legend Eliran Kantor (Sepultura, Septicflesh). The band is streaming the sick new single ‘Night of The Witch’ right now! Continue reading →
Heavy Metal legend Glenn Tipton has passed a message on to Judas Priest fans, thanking them for their support during the year and a half after he announced he was battling Parkinson’s disease. Tipton was actually diagnosed with Parkinson’s more than five years ago after being stricken by the condition at least five years prior. He didn’t announce he was ill until early 2018 that he would sit out touring activities in support of their latest album, Firepower (Epic). He was replaced by ‘Firepower’ album producer Andy Sneap, who is also known for his work in NWOBHM loving band Hell and cult thrash outfit Sabbat. Tipton occasionally joins Priest onstage for its encores, performing ‘Metal Gods’, ‘Breaking The Law’ and ‘Living After Midnight’.Tipton, who turned 72 last Friday, October 25th.Continue reading →
With people on social media proudly sharing photographs of their recently purchased or newly patched up tents, or cirrhosis-inducing beer supplies during the days and even weeks leading up to the event itself, by the time the big day actually arrives, anticipation for Bloodstock 2018 has already turned into a Christmas-like level of excitement.Continue reading →
With eighteen studio albums and almost fifty years under their bullet belts, Judas Priest, alongside Black Sabbath and Iron Maiden, have managed to become a household name even in houses where the occupants haven’t even heard of Heavy Metal. Their legacy is inarguable. In fact, there is so little left to say about the band that hasn’t already been documented in some way over the last four (now virtually five) decades, that all you really need to know is this: They’re Judas fucking Priest.Continue reading →