Queensrÿche As the clock hit 8PM, some people in the crowd started to yell, wanting the band to hit the stage and get the show started. The venue lights were dimmed and Pantera – “Walk” was heard through the speakers. The crowd was singing the lyrics and getting pumped. The band hit the stage with “Queen of the Reich” from their debut LP. Most of the set consisted of classics from the ‘80s, except “Behind The Walls” and “In Extremis” which are from the band’s latest album – Digital Noise Alliance.
Throughout the set, Todd La Torre interacted with the crowd and announced song after song. He also mentioned at one point, that Eddie Jackson (bass) was originally from Texas and the crowd reacted in the very positive way. Closer to the end of the set, Todd La Torre asked if anyone in the crowd saw the band for the first time. There were a few hands in the air. With that, the lead singer thanked everyone for coming and checking out and supporting the band, even if they came just to see Judas Priest.
This was my first experience seeing and hearing Queensrÿche. I enjoyed the awesome energy from the band and from the crowd. The set was full of hard-hitting songs to which everyone around me was head-banging. Todd La Torre’s voice is powerful, and he can hit very high notes. The band’s veterans – Michael “Whip” Wilton and bassist Eddie Jackson were incredible and full of energy and drummer Casey Grillo kept the thundering rhythm going throughout the set. Queensrÿche are a perfect band to pair up with Judas Priest. Both bands compliment each other with their energy and rhythm on stage.
- Queen of the Reich
- Behind The Walls
- Operation: Mind Crime
- In Extremis
- Take Hold Of The Flame
- Screamin in Digital
- Eyes Of A Stranger
Judas Priest I was introduced to the music of Judas Priest when I was 13-14 years old. One day I showed up unannounced at my uncle’s place and asked to look through his extensive Rock and Metal CD collection. The artwork of one album caught my eye – PAINKILLER. I put the CD into the player after asking for permission and had it on low volume. My uncle said, “This is not how you listen to this kind of music” and turned the volume up, to a very loud level. From that moment, I was hooked on Judas Priest. I’ve seen the band live at least ten times, from early 2000s up until 2019 when they toured with Uriah Heep. Every concert I went to was always incredible and full of energy.
This concert was no exception. As I was standing next to the stage, I noticed the decorations all around it. It looked like a factory floor, a metal works factory. It even had an office door next to the drum set. This clicked in my head – Rob Halford used to walk past a factory near his house when he was a kid. The whole stage setup was a homage to the band’s hometown. The stage also had a low hanging “Devil’s Tuning Fork” band logo with a bunch of projector lights all around it.
The lights were dimmed and Black Sabbath – “War Pigs” started to play from the speakers. The whole venue was packed, and every single person was singing the song. The huge trident logo lit up and was lifted above stage. The whole thing was red with very powerful white projectors pointing into the crowd and lighting up the whole venue. Judas Priest came on stage with “The Hellion” and the crowd went crazy. “Electric Eye” was next, followed by “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’”. The whole set was full of hard, fast, and energetic hits that spanned most of the band’s career. Not even one slow song. At one point I was standing next to a center speaker and heard Rob’s voice through it. It was the only thing I could hear. It was clear, powerful, and just incredible! Richie Faulkner was a total rock star on stage. He was doing all sorts of moves and interacting with Rob Halford, Scott Travis, Andy Sneap and the crowd throughout the whole set. Scott Travis as always, was a beast behind the drums and kept pounding the beats the whole night.
Ian Hill stood in his back corner as he always does and just kept the whole rhythm going. Andy Sneap stood next to him a few times and they were both head-banging in unison. He did an awesome job taking over Glenn Tipton’s duties on stage. Rob was all over the stage and the crowd loved it. He changed his leather jackets and trench coats a few times during the whole set. During “Halls of Valhalla” he was hitting very high notes and then went into a deep, low growl. That is an incredible feat for anyone, especially for someone in their 70s! I am amazed that Rob can still pull off all the powerful and clear screaming and has total control of his voice. After “Halls of Valhalla”, there was Rob Halford’s voice workout with the crowd, and the band kicked off “The Green Manalishi (With the Two Pronged Crown)” and the whole venue was signing along. Next came “Screaming for Vengeance” after which the band briefly left the stage. Motorcycle engine sounds were heard through the speakers and Rob Halford rode onto stage on a Harley. The band followed shortly and kicked off “Hell Bent For Leather”. Rob was on the bike the whole time. Next was everyone’s favorite “Breaking The Law” and everyone in the crowd was singing every single word.
The band left the stage once again after the song, and a huge bull with red glowing eyes was rolled on the stage. The band started playing the final song of the night “Living After Midnight” and once again, everyone around me was singing along. This show was incredible and emotional one for me, as I was able to check off a bucket list item. I always dreamed of being right next to the stage and taking photos of the band. It’s an incredible feat for a band to exist for over five decades. It’s also incredible that Judas Priest are still full of energy and able to perform such fast, heavy songs without missing a beat. They are truly METAL GODS.
The Hellion/Electric Eye
Riding On The Wind
You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’
Never The Heroes Beyond The Realms Of Death Judas Is Rising
Between The Hammer And The Anvil
Halls Of Valhalla
The Green Manalishi (With the Two Pronged Crown)
Screaming for Vengeance
Hell Bent For Leather
Breaking The Law
Living After Midnight
Pictures and review by Artur Brakhman, see more stunning photos from Artur at this link here.