DVD Review: Judas Priest / Epitaph
What a way to celebrate Judas Priest, the band that have been slamming their way into metal fans ears, hearts and minds for 40 years, than on this brand new live concert DVD taken from their final show of the Epitaph tour at the Hammersmith Apollo Theater in London, UK 2012. Not only was it the last show of the tour but it was supposed to be their final bow ..come to find out it was just their final world tour.
Anyone who can still take the stage at 61 years old and still belt out these tunes better than ever.. truly you have to be an immortal Metal God Rob Halford! Of course the only down side to last year’s concert run was that long time guitar player KK Downing had decided to retire and did not participate on the Epitaph tour. After watching this show Richie Faulkner fits in better than anyone would have expected and you simply don’t notice after a while. What you will notice however is that this unique 23 track live retrospective covers the entire Judas Priest Catalog with at least one song from each of Priest’s 14 classic albums from 1974-2008 (skipping only the Tim Owens releases).
Priest have always been a live spectacle tour after tour and this one is no exception. If you want pyro, motorcycles, laser lights welcome aboard..we’re expecting you! What I liked a lot about the way this was filmed is that you get a camera shot right above drummer Scott Travis and as you hear him pounding away on that huge double bass kit. You can also see what a mammoth this guy really is with a wing span any pterodactyl would be envious of! I also like the use of the giant video screen right behind Scott as it made it easier at times to follow along to which album they were pulling songs from.
Halford is wearing stage boots on this tour that would make KISS stand up and take notice! He also changes coats throughout the performance based on the mood of the song just to add to the visual display. Tipton and Faulkner do play off each other quite well during the whole show trading leads with ease. Longtime bass player Ian Hill is still standing at the rear of the stage, as he as always done, holding down the rock fort.
I think long time fans will enjoy this (with the inclusion of a few rare Priest tracks) as well as newer fans or someone maybe searching for the best live DVD to have in their Priest collection. What I was a little disappointed not to see was that there are no extras, commentary or any other bonus features added. Considering it’s such a milestone accomplishment I would have figured to see at least an interview or two, maybe some behind the scenes footage or a documentary or a “history of” type feature.
Judas Priest have always been able to maintain that they are “defenders of the faith” of metal fans worldwide. This DVD is truly a celebration of that faith and a show of solidarity from a fan base that does want it to end..not yet anyway.
For more info on the DVD visit the Judas Priest website here.
01. Battle Hymn
02. Rapid Fire
03. Metal Gods
04. Heading Out To The Highway
05. Judas Rising
07. Victim Of Changes
08. Never Satisfied
09. Diamonds And Rust
11. Night Crawler
12. Turbo Lover
13. Beyond The Realms Of Death
14. The Sentinel
15. Blood Red Skies
16. The Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown)
17. Breaking The Law
19. The Hellion
20. Electric Eye
21. Hell Bent For Leather
22. You’ve Got Another Thing Coming
23. Living After Midnight