Redeemer of Souls

Judas Priest have been looking for redemption since their 2008 concept album, Nostradamus, fell flat with fans. Their follow-up goes back to guitar-bludgeoning basics on songs that explore vengeance, virility and Valhalla – classic metal themes that might feel tired if it wasn't for the fact that Priest are one of the bands that helped pioneer the pummeling genre in the first place. Frontman Rob Halford's operatic howls soar on "Battle Cry," and the group's guitarists bring drama to the galloping title track and the relentless "Metalizer." Above all, Redeemer is proof that Priest can still call themselves metal's defenders of the faith.

From The Archives Issue 1214: July 31, 2014