Judas Priest and the Metal God himself Rob Halford fired up fans with a set of classic heavy metal songs in Oxon Hill, Maryland this past week. The “50 Years of Metal” North American tour was postponed in 2021, but the band are back on the road and showing no signs of age. Top notch musicians playing unapologetic heavy metal music. Truly amazing.
Anyway, be sure to check out the Official Judas Priest Website for music, news, merch, and tickets for all upcoming tour dates. Continue reading below for my full review. All images copyright and courtesy of Andy Jillson.
Judas Priest is currently touring across North America and wowing fans along the way. Priest’s stage production, lighting, sound, and performance is one of the best in the business. It’s a heavy metal sensory overload.
The audience consisted of hard rock and metal enthusiasts from all walks of life. The second Priest took the stage the crowd went absolutely insane. Fans headbanged, played air guitar, and screamed along for nearly two hours. Denim and leather gear far as the eye could see.
Priest left no room for duds in the setlist. They played a mixture of their most well known and loved songs from the 1970s, 80s, and early 90s. Some of the highlights were performances of “You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’,” “The Sentinel,” “Rocka Rolla,” “Victim Of Changes,” and “Painkiller.”
Without a doubt the best part of the night was when Glenn Tipton surprisingly took the stage for Priest’s first encore. It was easy to tell that is what the fans wanted. Tipton flawlessly played Priest classics “Electric Eye,” “Hell Bent for Leather,” and “Breaking the Law.” The band reappeared for the final encore with a large inflatable bull which apparently had been absent from the past several shows.
Priest’s last song was one of their most popular songs, “Living After Midnight.” I clearly remember watching this video on MTVs Headbangers Ball several times as a kid in the mid 80s. That track is off the classic metal album, British Steel. The band played that song like it was the first song of the set. Full of positive energy and metal power. Bravo.
Judas Priest is one of Britain’s most iconic musical artists for a good reason. If you are unfamiliar with Judas Priest you must not be quite the hard rock or heavy metal fan you thought you were. Judas Priest are the archetypes of hard rock and metal. They formed in 1969, but didn’t really find their signature heavy metal sound until the late 70s. That signature sound literally changed the music world and has influenced countless amounts of musicians around the world.
Rob Halford (vocalist) and Ian Hill (bassist) are the only two original members left in the band though. Andy Sneap stepped-in for Glenn Tipton in 2018 and founding guitarist K.K. Downing was replaced by Richie Faulkner in 2011. All current band members are accomplished musicians and still able to play exciting rock music.
I feel extremely fortunate to have seen Judas Priest on the “50 Years of Metal” tour. Now is the time to get off your ass and go see a metal show! The future of the band seems to be unclear. See them while you still can.
Below are more photos from Judas Priest’s performance at The Theater at MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, MD on 3/31/2022. Enjoy!