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Band Photo: Judas Priest (?)

Formed: 1967
From: Birmingham, United Kingdom
Last Known Status: Active

Latest Judas Priest News

Below is our complete Judas Priest news coverage, including columns and articles pertaining to the band. Some articles listed may be indirectly related, such as side projects of the band members, etc.

Note: We began associating news directly with bands in late 2003. Therefore, earlier band news may not be listed on this page.

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Morbid Angel Confirmed For Gods Of Metal Festival

Legendary Florida death metallers MORBID ANGEL have been confirmed for the Gods of Metal festival, set to take place June 27-29, 2008 in Bologna, Italy. The festival billing is now shaping up as follows:

IRON MAIDEN (headliner June 27)
JUDAS PRIEST (headliner June 29)
CARCASS
YNGWIE MALMSTEEN
MORBID ANGEL
AT THE GATES
MESHUGGAH
ENSLAVED

More bands will be announced soon.

MORBID ANGEL is currently in the studio working on material for its first studio album since 2003's "Heretic". The upcoming CD will mark the group's first release to feature frontman David Vincent since 1995's "Domination".

MORBID ANGEL is presently unsigned, having parted ways with Earache Records following "Heretic"'s release.

Although MORBID ANGEL's upcoming album does not currently have a name, its title will likely begin with the letter "I", in keeping with the band's tradition of titling their albums in alphabetical order beginning with 1989's "Altars of Madness", and continuing through "Heretic".

MORBID ANGEL's current lineup includes Vincent, guitarist Trey Azagthoth and drummer Pete Sandoval.

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Rob Halford Speaks On New Judas Priest Album

Bulgaria's Tangra Mega Rock have issued a new interview with JUDAS PRIEST frontman ROB HALFORD. The following is an excerpt from the interview, conducted by Vassil Varbanov:

Q: What should we expect from Judas Priest's Nostradamus? Is it the best record you've ever done?

A: "Yeah, I think it's some of the greatest metal Priest has ever made. It's a wonderful story about this real man that lived 500 years ago in France. A man that was able to look into the future. He had a very complicated life and we're talking about every aspect of it - his prophecies, the difficulties he faced with different people... We're surrounding the entire story with some of the greatest metal Priest has ever made. It's everything you love in Judas Priest. We're mixing it right now and it should be out sometime this year. We're also going on the road doing some massive world tours - probably two. We'll be doing the classic Priest tour, so you'll get to hear all of your favourites like 'Breaking The Law', 'Living After Midnight', 'Electric Eye', 'Metal Gods', etc., and then we'll be doing a Nostradamus Tour where we'll play everything from the album - from the beginning to the end. It's the year of the Priest."

Read the full article at this location.

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Judas Priest Announce More Summer Shows

Judas Priest have revealed more European tour dates throughout the summer, they are as follows:

JUNE 2008
2nd ICEHALL, FINLAND
5th ROCK FESTIVAL, SWEDEN
7th ROCK FESTIVAL, TRONDHEIM, NORWAY
8th BERGENSHALL, BERGEN, NORWAY
11th ROCKHAL, LUXEMBOURG
17th CEZ ARENA, OSTRAVA, CZECH REPUBLIC
23rd PHILIPSHALLE, DUSSELDORF, GERMANY
24th ZENITH, MUNICH, GERMANY

Judas Priest are currently mixing their new album "Nostradamus" which is a concept album based around the French philosopher of the same name.
27th GRASPOP METAL FESTIVAL, BELGIUM
28th BANG YOUR HEAD FESTIVAL, STUTTGART, GERMANY
29th GODS OF METAL FESTIVAL, BOLOGNA, ITALY
JULY 2008
1st SMEDEREVO FESTIVAL, BELGRADE, SERBIA
2nd DOM SPORTOVA, ZAGREB, CROATIA
3rd LIBEREC ARENA, PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC

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Judas Priest Prepare To Mix "Nostradamus"

Metal-rules.com spoke to JUDAS PRIEST singer ROB HALFORD recently about a number of topics. A few excerpts from the chat found below:

Metal-rules.com: On the status of the new Judas Priest CD, Nostradamus:
Halford: "I’ve been away for about a month while Glenn and K.K. [Downing, Judas Priest guitarist] have been doing their final guitar overdubs. We’re about to start mixing, so I’m going to see the boys in a few days time and then we’ll be rockin’ and roaring through the mixing sessions."

Metal-rules.com: So your vocals are already laid down for the new album then?
Halford: "Yeah, I completed those some time back. Everybody does their bits as you go along and normally I don’t do my vocal work until the bulk of the recording has been done which is how it turned out and rhythm guitars and everything were laid and all the other instruments, but Glenn and K.K. have just been burning the midnight metal oil and getting all of their leads completed, so I’ll be excited to hear what they’ve been doing. Then we get on with the mixing and the mastering and get it out for (this) year when the tour kicks off."

Metal-rules.com: So we can probably expect something before the summer then I take it?
Halford: "I think so, yeah. I mean, you know the way it goes. Most bands hit the road when they’ve got a new release out there. It’ll have been a couple of years since we’ve been back on the world circuit."

Metal-rules.com: When Judas Priest does get out on the road again, is there any chance that any material from the two albums that you weren’t on - Jugulator and Demolition - will be performed live?
Halford: "Yeah and I’ve said this before that those two records are as important in the Priest world as everything else. Glenn, K.K. and I have talked about this and I’d welcome it. I think it would be an exciting moment for me to cover the tracks that my mate Tim [“Ripper” Owens] worked on while he was with the band. So again, anything is possible. Each time when we put a set list together, it gets increasingly difficult because we’ve got so many songs from so many records that we just have to look at the set list and figure out what the favorites are and go from there. Again, Priest fans around the world are always putting ideas upon what they’d like to hear us do, but I think it would be kind of fresh to pick maybe one or two tracks from both of those records and just give it the metal god touch."

Metal-rules.com: When War Of Words first came out you drew a lot of comparisons to PANTERA. Did you feel those comparisons were valid?
Halford: "No. That again is something that always irritated me. I think if I hadn’t have had such a wonderful time with Pantera on the Painkiller tour in Europe and if I hadn’t have had the pleasure to run down to Dallas for a day to work with the guys for the Buffy The Vampire Slayer movie on “Light Comes Out of Black,” I don’t think that would have been so much on the radar, under the spotlight. It irritated me because that’s not the kind of thing I do. I don’t chase after other people with my music. I try and be an innovator and the songs that I wrote for War Of Words which I’d never done before because I usually work with a team of writers—I did all that myself in Phoenix, whatever year that was. It was just pouring out of me just because it’d been waiting to flow and go for a number of years and when we found the players for Fight and we started to rehearse the music in Phoenix, everybody had their own definitive sound and style in place and ready to work and so there was never a moment of saying, “Hey guys, you’ve got to get a sound like Pantera”, which is what the implication is. That would be absolutely fucking stupid, you know. Everybody had their way of playing and so it was just a case of recreating those very rough skeletal ideas that I presented to them and then going into the demo phase. I mean, you listen to the demos, which obviously is the first stage before production, and you can just sense the great energy and the real determination from everybody’s performance."

Metal-rules.com: I was hoping you could clear up one misconception. Did you leave Judas Priest to do Fight or were you still in Judas Priest when War Of Words was being written and recorded?
Halford: "Well, that’s a good question and the answer is that I was still connected to Priest while I was writing all of that music and looking for band players. It wasn’t until I was finding myself in a position where the only way I could venture out to look at other record company affiliations did I see that the legal language in the contract was what I felt to be really severe and restrictive. I wasn’t the only one going through it. I think [Bruce] Springsteen was going through it at the time and George Michael. Everybody was contesting the language and the language alluded to the fact that if you were going to step away from being in that band, in that contract, then you would be free to pursue other searches for other labels and that’s what I had to do and of course that’s when the proverbial shit hit the fan. I still insist today, in my own mind, that I didn’t leave Priest. I left Priest in the legalese of it all, but it just came at a time when…you know that Painkiller tour and the Reno trial before it had been extremely difficult for us all on a personal level and in retrospect, we’ve said now that the best thing we should have done was to have taken two or three years off. We’d been working hard from Rocka Rolla pretty much consistently up until Painkiller and bands are human and sometimes you need to take a holiday but we never did (laughs). But that’s really how the essence of it all came around. I mean, the thing that’s more important to me is the fact that Priest was still Priest and you know the band was still there, the band was still working and that was a little bit of a comfort. I think I would have been full of remorse if the band had completely broken to pieces but that was not the case because Tim went in and did some fantastic work on Jugulator and Demolition."

Metal-rules.com: Going back to the TWO years, there was an interview that you have been famously quoted as saying that "metal is dead.” Was there a defining moment that brought metal back to life for you again after the Two project?
Halford: "Oh well, that was an absolutely fucking stupid thing for me to say. I was just so emotional that day. I can remember I was sitting on my tour bus outside of the Hollywood Palladium in L.A. and I think the Two band was working with Rammstein that night and I was just in a bitch mood (laughs). I said something which I…..you know, everybody has the freedom to be stupid and I was completely stupid that day. I’ve made amends in recent years about making that ridiculous comment. I think I was probably just reflecting on my own situation, frustrations that come with what you do and I think it was probably a Monday night, I don’t particularly like Monday that much (laughs). Had it been Friday or Saturday, I’d have been in a different frame of mind. But I was just being a bit of a petulant rock star bitch that afternoon, so there you go. It’s all water under the bridge now."

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Judas Priest Reveal Summer Festival Dates

Several festival announcements featuring JUDAS PRIEST have been made over the past few weeks. The following dates have been confirmed via the band's official website, with more dates to be announced throughout January:


June
5 - Sweden Rock - Sölvesborg, Sweden
27 - Graspop Metal Meeting - Dessel, Belgium
28 - Bang Your Head - Balingen, Germany
29 - Gods Of Metal - Bologna, Italy

Note that the previously announced Castle Festival date, set to take place from July 1st - 5th in Smederevo Fortress, Serbia, is not on this list and thus should not be considered 100% confirmed.

Stay tuned for updates.

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First Acts For Graspop 2008 Announced

Graspop Metal Meeting 2008 is scheduled for June 27th - 29th, 2008 at the festival park De Boeretand in Dessel, Belgium.

The first acts for the festival have been confirmed as follows: IRON MAIDEN, JUDAS PRIEST, WHITESNAKE, MINISTRY, SONATA ARCTICA, BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE, VOLBEAT, MY DYING BRIDE, AT THE GATES, FORBIDDEN, HOLLENTHON, DEATHSTARS, CONVERGE, COMEBACK KID.

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Judas Priest Post Update

JUDAS PRIEST have issued the following update:

"We're taking a short break from recording for the Christmas and New Year holidays then we'll be back in the studio finishing off the new album!

All is going really well and we are also in the process of setting up the World Tour for 2008!

We want to wish you all a very metal Christmas and a rocking New Year!!"

As previously reported, Judas Priest have been confirmed as another one of the headlining acts to play at next year's instalment of the Bang Your Head!!! Festival, set to take place on June 27th and 28th in Balingen, Germany. The show will be Priest's only open-air German appearance in 2008.

Priest will also play the Graspop Metal Meeting that same weekend in Dessel, Belgium. Exact performance dates will be announced soon.

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Fight Reveal London DVD Screening Details

The following press release is in regards to the London DVD screening for War Of Words - The Film, starring ROB HALFORD and his first solo band FIGHT:

Attention UK Fight and Rob Halford Fans!!! Register for free tickets to London screening!

Fight - War Of Words - The Film
Tuesday, December 18th: 7:30 PM Screening
The Odeon Covent Gardens, address is as follows:
Odeon Covent Garden
135 Shaftsbury Avenue
London
WC2H 8AH

Conversation with Rob Halford follows the screening. Free poster to all attendees!

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Winters Bane Reform With Tim "Ripper" Owens?

Rumor has it that the creative forces behind the classic WINTERS BANE Heart Of A Killer album (1993) - vocalist Tim "Ripper" Owens (ICED EARTH, ex-JUDAS PRIEST) and guitarist Lou St. Paul (FIRES OF BABYLON) - have reunited and writing has commenced on a new Winters Bane record, with Wendy Dio of Niji Management currently soliciting offers from interested labels. Word also has it that Winters Bane would plan to tour extensively in support of this album. More news as it develops!

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Carcass Confirmed For Gods Of Metal Festival

The 2008 edition of Italy's Gods Of Metal Festival (www.godsofmetal.it) will be taking place at the Arena Parco Nord in Bologna from June 27th - 29th.

The latest act confirmed for the festival, according to Groovebox.it, is Britain's CARCASS.

Acts on the bill currently include: IRON MAIDEN (headlining June 27th), JUDAS PRIEST (headlining June 29th), CARCASS, MESHUGGAH, AT THE GATES, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN and ENSLAVED.

More bands will be announced soon.

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Judas Priest And More To Play Gods Of Metal

According to a posting on the Italian rock/metal webzine Groovebox.it, JUDAS PRIEST, MESHUGGAH and AT THE GATES are among the newly confirmed bands for the Gods of Metal festival, set to take place June 27-29, 2008 in Bologna, Italy. The festival billing is now shaping up as follows:

IRON MAIDEN (June 27 headliners)
JUDAS PRIEST (June 29 headliners)
MESHUGGAH
AT THE GATES
YNGWIE MALMSTEEN
ENSLAVED

More bands will be announced soon.

As previously reported, JUDAS PRIEST has also been confirmed for next year's Sweden Rock Festival, which will be held June 4-7, 2008 in in Sölvesborg, Sweden.

JUDAS PRIEST's upcoming tour will include shows where the group's entire upcoming "Nostradamus" album (based on the legendary 16th century prophet Nostradamus) will be performed as well as concerts featuring the band's classic songs, singer Rob Halford revealed during a November 16, 2007 appearance on Eddie Trunk's "Friday Night Rocks" radio show.

Regarding the direction of the material and how whole concept for the "Nostradamus" record came about, Halford recently told PureGrainAudio.com, "It sounds absolutely fucking amazing and that's not me inflating it, it is genuinely spectacular. So we're still carrying on with that and it should be out sometime in 2008. The idea (for the record) came from our manager Bill Curbishley, because we were ready to go in and do another studio record, but Bill came to see us towards the end of the 'Angel of Retribution' tour, he came to Russia, we were playing Russia and we had lunch with him and he said, 'Look, I have this idea.' Bill manages THE WHO, you know, Pete and Roger, and Bill was behind the enormous success of 'Tommy' and he said, 'I just think that you know, maybe you should think about this possibility of doing a concept album and I've been thinking about this guy Nostradamus.' And as soon as he brought the name up, I'm like, I'm there, let's go, you don't have to say anything else. I knew something of him already like everybody does about the books that you read about him, or on the Internet or on TV, documentaries and I thought wow, this is absolutely brilliant so that's where it all came about from."

On the rumors that "Nostradamus" will be a double album, Halford said, "It is a rumor still. I mean, there is an enormous amount of material and you can only put so much on a single CD so you know, we're trying to tell the story of his life and we're trying to cover every significant moment of his life and I think you know, when we got it all recorded, that's when you're faced with the reality of how much time you got and how much a CD will afford you and the timing of it all. So we just ask everyone to bear with us and as we actually get into the mixing mode, we'll be able to be more definitive and tell everybody exactly what we've got, but we just want to make sure we tell his life story so we'll do whatever it takes to do that."

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Lunarmile To Enter Studio This Week

LUNARMILE, the British band featuring frontwoman Toni-Marie Iommi (daughter of BLACK SABBATH guitarist Tony Iommi) and bassist Alex Hill (son of JUDAS PRIEST bassist Ian Hill), will enter the studio this week with producer Chris Tsangarides (JUDAS PRIEST, BLACK SABBATH, THIN LIZZY) to begin work on new material. More information will be made available soon.

As previously reported, LUNARMILE will embark on a UK tour of Barfly clubs in February with NEMESEA and SERENADE FOR JUNE. The dates are as follows:

Feb. 16 - Barfly/Moshulu - Aberdeen, UK
Feb. 17 - Barfly - Glasgow, UK
Feb. 18 - Barfly - Birmingham, UK
Feb. 19 - Barfly - Cardilff, UK
Feb. 20 - Barfly - London, UK
Feb. 21 - Barfly - Cambridge, UK
Feb. 22 - Barfly - Brighton, UK

A five-minute video clip documenting LUNARMILE's April 2007 tour with BREED 77 and FOREVER NEVER can be viewed below.

LUNARMILE's latest EP features the three tracks "4 AM", "Get Over Yourself" and "I Know", all of which are also available via iTunes. In addition, the CD format includes a bonus acoustic version of the track "Stay". More...

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Bands Confirmed For Sweden Rock Festival

JUDAS PRIEST, SAXON, CARCASS and AT THE GATES are among the bands that have been confirmed for next year's Sweden Rock Festival, set to take place June 4-7, 2008 in in Sölvesborg, Sweden.

The festival billing is shaping up as follows:

JUDAS PRIEST (UK) (Headliner)
BLUE ÖYSTER CULT (US)
SAXON (UK)
ELECTRIC LIGHT ORCHESTRA (UK)
TESLA (US)
AT THE GATES (S)
DERRINGER BAND (US)
HAVANA BLACK (FIN)
THE BLUES BAND (UK)
MINISTRY (US)
CARCASS (UK)
COHEED & CAMBRIA (US)
HENSLEY/LAWTON & LIVE FIRE (UK)
DARE (UK)
ULI JON ROTH (S)
SHAKIN' STREET (FR)
GOTTHARD (CH)
MUSTASCH (S)
SABATON (S)
BONAFIDE (S)
LIZZY BORDEN (US)
AXEWITCH (S)
ASTRAL DOORS (S)
AVATAR (S)
VOLBEAT (DK)
NEGATIVE (FIN)

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Judas Priest To Launch World Tour In June

JUDAS PRIEST's official web site has been updated with the following message:

"The JUDAS PRIEST machine will be rolling out on the road again next year. The tour starts in June 2008 — dates to be announced shortly! Please note that only when dates are announced here on our website are they actually official and confirmed!!"

As previously reported, JUDAS PRIEST is among the bands who are rumored to be playing next year's Sweden Rock Festival, set to take place June 4-7, 2008 in in Sölvesborg, Sweden.

JUDAS PRIEST's upcoming tour will include shows where the group's entire upcoming "Nostradamus" album (based on the legendary 16th century prophet Nostradamus) will be performed as well as concerts featuring the band's classic songs, singer Rob Halford revealed during a November 16, 2007 appearance on Eddie Trunk's "Friday Night Rocks" radio show.

Regarding the direction of the material and how whole concept for the "Nostradamus" record came about, Halford recently told PureGrainAudio.com, "It sounds absolutely fucking amazing and that's not me inflating it, it is genuinely spectacular. So we're still carrying on with that and it should be out sometime in 2008. The idea (for the record) came from our manager Bill Curbishley, because we were ready to go in and do another studio record, but Bill came to see us towards the end of the 'Angel of Retribution' tour, he came to Russia, we were playing Russia and we had lunch with him and he said, 'Look, I have this idea.' Bill manages THE WHO, you know, Pete and Roger, and Bill was behind the enormous success of 'Tommy' and he said, 'I just think that you know, maybe you should think about this possibility of doing a concept album and I've been thinking about this guy Nostradamus.' And as soon as he brought the name up, I'm like, I'm there, let's go, you don't have to say anything else. I knew something of him already like everybody does about the books that you read about him, or on the Internet or on TV, documentaries and I thought wow, this is absolutely brilliant so that's where it all came about from."

On the rumors that "Nostradamus" will be a double album, Halford said, "It is a rumor still. I mean, there is an enormous amount of material and you can only put so much on a single CD so you know, we're trying to tell the story of his life and we're trying to cover every significant moment of his life and I think you know, when we got it all recorded, that's when you're faced with the reality of how much time you got and how much a CD will afford you and the timing of it all. So we just ask everyone to bear with us and as we actually get into the mixing mode, we'll be able to be more definitive and tell everybody exactly what we've got, but we just want to make sure we tell his life story so we'll do whatever it takes to do that."

The organizers of the Sweden Rock Festival will announce the first 20-25 bands confirmed for next year's event during the kick-off party on November 24 at Tyrol in Stockholm. The party will be broadcast live on the Stockholm radio station 106.7 Rockklassiker beginning at 7:00 p.m. local time and will be available for streaming worldwide via Rockklassiker.se.

This year's Sweden Rock Festival kick-off celebration will feature performances by GOTTHARD, SABATON and HAZY/DIZZY. In addition, a one-off all-star band has also been put together featuring:

Uli Jon Roth (SCORPIONS, ELECTRIC SUN) - Guitar
Mark Boals (YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, RING OF FIRE) - Vocals
Mats Levén (YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, AT VANCE, THERION) - Vocals
Liz Vandall (SAHARA, Uli JON ROTH) - Vocals
Janne Stark (OVERDRIVE, BALTIMOORE) - Guitar
Ule Ritgen (ZENO, ELECTRIC SUN, FAIR WARNING) - Bass
Thomas Broman (ELECTRIC BOYS, JOHN NORUM, 21 GUNS) - Drums

The group will perform vintage SCORPIONS and ELECTRIC SUN material, along with other "nice surprises."

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Legends Rumoured For Sweden Rock Festival

VAN HALEN and JUDAS PRIEST are among the bands who are rumored to be playing next year's Sweden Rock Festival, set to take place June 4-7, 2008 in in Sölvesborg, Sweden. It should be noted, however, that neither of these acts has been officially confirmed for the event and their possible participation in the festival should be treated as nothing more than speculation.

The organizers of the Sweden Rock Festival will announce the first 20-25 bands confirmed for next year's event during the kick-off party on November 24 at Tyrol in Stockholm. The party will be broadcast live on the Stockholm radio station 106.7 Rockklassiker beginning at 7:00 p.m. local time and will be available for streaming worldwide via www.rockklassiker.se.

This year's Sweden Rock Festival kick-off celebration will feature performances by GOTTHARD, SABATON and HAZY/DIZZY. In addition, a one-off all-star band has also been put together featuring:

Uli Jon Roth (SCORPIONS, ELECTRIC SUN) - Guitar
Mark Boals (YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, RING OF FIRE) - Vocals
Mats Levén (YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, AT VANCE, THERION) - Vocals
Liz Vandall (SAHARA, Uli JON ROTH) - Vocals
Janne Stark (OVERDRIVE, BALTIMOORE) - Guitar
Ule Ritgen (ZENO, ELECTRIC SUN, FAIR WARNING) - Bass
Thomas Broman (ELECTRIC BOYS, JOHN NORUM, 21 GUNS) - Drums

The group will perform vintage SCORPIONS and ELECTRIC SUN material, along with other "nice surprises."

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Judas Priest Begin Mixing "Nostradamus"

JUDAS PRIEST has begun mixing its new concept album about the legendary 16th century prophet Nostradamus, singer Rob Halford revealed during an appearance this past Friday (November 16) on Eddie Trunk's "Friday Night Rocks" radio show. In addition, JUDAS PRIEST will make an announcement in the next couple of weeks about tour dates for 2008. According to Halford, the upcoming tour will include shows where the entire "Nostradamus" album will be performed as well as concerts featuring the band's classic songs.

Regarding the direction of the material and how whole concept for the record came about, Halford recently told PureGrainAudio.com, "It sounds absolutely fucking amazing and that's not me inflating it, it is genuinely spectacular. So we're still carrying on with that and it should be out sometime in 2008. The idea (for the record) came from our manager Bill Curbishley, because we were ready to go in and do another studio record, but Bill came to see us towards the end of the 'Angel of Retribution' tour, he came to Russia, we were playing Russia and we had lunch with him and he said, 'Look, I have this idea.' Bill manages THE WHO, you know, Pete and Roger, and Bill was behind the enormous success of 'Tommy' and he said, 'I just think that you know, maybe you should think about this possibility of doing a concept album and I've been thinking about this guy Nostradamus.' And as soon as he brought the name up, I'm like, I'm there, let's go, you don't have to say anything else. I knew something of him already like everybody does about the books that you read about him, or on the Internet or on TV, documentaries and I thought wow, this is absolutely brilliant so that's where it all came about from." More...

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Agent Steel Cover Judas Priest: Video Available

Video of California-based power metallers AGENT STEEL performing their cover of the JUDAS PRIEST classic 'The Ripper' at the Rock Al Parque Festival on November 3rd in Bogota, Colombia can be viewed below. More...

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New Book Looks At Early Days of Judas Priest

Neil Daniels is still heavy metal band Judas Priest's biggest fan – despite incurring the band's wrath by writing a controversial biography on them. The book charts the bands humble beginnings in West Bromwich to their rise to fame and everything in between.
Published in September by Omnibus the initial release of the book was marred by anger from the bands management over claims that it was their 'true story'. The band had world-wide success in the 1980s, selling millions of records and packing out Madison Square Garden in New York but only one book was written about them in 1984.

Neil said: "I thought they were an interesting bunch of guys. The main emphasis is on the early years which was a more overcast period in their career."

The band's management still maintain that the book is "not official and is not approved by the band" via their official website.
Neil responded: "I just think that they had a good story that I wanted to tell." The 25-year-old, from Peasley Cross, added: "I believe that if it had been official then it would be censored. "They would have shied away from talking about the darker side of rock and roll, the drinking, the drugs and the groupies. They all have families now after all."

Since the release of his first book, he has found the time in between working full time as a librarian to write a biography on Led Zeppelin's Robert Plant, chronicalling his time with the group and his expansive solo work, due out next year.

For more information visit www.neildaniels.com.

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Iced Earth Vocalist Talks Illegal Downloading

Sweden's Metalshrine conducted an interview with ICED EARTH/ex-JUDAS PRIEST singer Tim "Ripper" Owens on October 25, 2007 in Stockholm. A couple of excerpts from the chat follow:

Metalshrine: Do you see any fear of not being able to make a living out of releasing records and playing live, since people are just downloading these days and artists don't sell as many records as they used to?

Owens: Definitely, yeah! It's definitely something that hurts. I don't think people realize what they're doing to the industry. It gets silly, really, that people even think that it's right to download stuff for free. But I think it's starting... now they have so many sites where you pay to download, so I think that people more and more have done that. You have iTunes and the sites where you pay to download. It hurts. I mean, it definitely takes more away. It scales down touring budgets and they don't realize how much it scales down everything. It's a shame. You just release them and see what you can do.

Metalshrine: Do you see it like totally getting away from the record companies and releasing stuff by yourself, through a website or whatever?

Owens: I don't know. Maybe there will end up being more specialized companies that sell records. Maybe labels are gonna try to be more "online labels." I think they are trying to do both now. Labels obviously have to focus on the Internet and making albums. I don't know. It's hard to say. I think there will always be CDs for quite a while. People still want some CDs, they want the artwork, so people will still buy them. It's hard. I buy a lot of my stuff, the majority of it, from iTunes, but I'm still buying it, though, that's the difference.

Metalshrine: Do you have any other projects going on? Have you ever thought of releasing a solo album?

Owens: I have been kind of contemplating it. Maybe trying to make some type of album and get a bunch of different musicians to do it with me. My idea would be kind of neat to just try and get 5 or 6 different guitar players, or just different people who each of them write a song for the album and then I write the lyrics and the melodies. Just try to release an album like that, would be kind of cool. Try to get Scott Ian [ANTHRAX] on a song.

Metalshrine: Yeah, I read about that. Scott Ian and Jon Oliva [SAVATAGE].

Owens: Yeah, Jon Oliva. Have him do some songs with me and maybe get Michael Wilton from QUEENSRŸCHE to do a song and maybe even Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR to do a song. Get Chris Caffery [SAVATAGE] to do a song. I think it would be kind of neat. I'd also like to make an album with Jon Oliva. I think that would be fun. But I've got the BEYOND FEAR thing now and I have some other things in the works. I have some people who have sent me some music and I've worked on some songs with them, so we'll see what happens with that.

Metalshrine: You've got an awesome voice, did you ever take lessons or are you totally self taught?

Owens: I started singing when I was a kid and I was in choirs and had some good teachers. Something I was born with, you know. I think I would've rather been born to be a brain surgeon, then my wife would've been a little happier (laughs). It's something I was born with and had the natural ability to do it, but then I've taken care of it and worked on it. It's not I just took for granted. OK, I've got this gift, but I'm not gonna run it into the ground, which I've seen a lot of people do. A lot of practice have gone into it.

Metalshrine: Just a few things about your JUDAS PRIEST days. Do you know if there's anything recorded with you that hasn't been released?

Owens: No, I think everything's been released. There's nothing. No extra tracks or no extra things that hasn't been released. I'm certain that nothing's left.

Metalshrine: If you got the chance, would you open up for JUDAS PRIEST?

Owens: Ah, man, we would open for them any day. I mean, I think it's a great combination and I think the fans would love it. I think ICED EARTH supporting JUDAS PRIEST on a tour would be a good thing and I know Jon says the same thing. There are bands that you want to open for. JUDAS PRIEST, IRON MAIDEN, HEAVEN AND HELL. Anybody that's big. You know, METALLICA, that would be the opportunity of a lifetime to open up for anyone of them.

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Scorpions/ Judas Priest North American 2008 Tour?

Lead singer/guitar player Joey Eppard from Woodstock, NY-based prog rockers THREE says about 10 minutes, 15 seconds into a recent interview that the band might be involved in a SCORPIONS/JUDAS PRIEST tour in 2008 in North America. The Scorpions are currently touring in support of their latest album, Humanity - Hour 1, and will be releasing the Live At Wacken Open Air 2006: A Night To Remember - A Journey Through Time DVD before the end of the year. The UK metal gods Judas Priest are finishing up work on their forthcoming concept album, Nostradamus.

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