Tag Archives: gull records

Judas Priest’s “Sad Wings Of Destiny” @ Forty Years (1976-2016)

Back in 2014 we celebrated the fact that the very first Judas Priest album had been released forty years ago with “Rocka Rolla” but as many fans of the band knew full well – their debut was NOT a Metal album by any real qualification and instead had more of a Heavy Blues and Hard Rock vibe to it along with some light Psychedelic elements. I toasted the release HERE for those interested in checking it out. “Sad Wings Of Destiny” would come out almost two years later and find a couple of notable changes taking place. The first would be the most important and come by the way of the band’s sound which had gotten a lot edgier and showed that The Priest was indeed a Heavy Metal band from bottom to top from this moment on. Songs like “Victim Of Changes” showed us just what kind of a vocal powerhouse Rob Halford was and the guitar work of Tipton and Downing just cut through your speakers when played at significant volume. The second change would come over on the drum throne as John Hinch who recorded the first album was replaced by Alan Moore (no, not the comic book writer). The band felt that Moore had better skills on the kit and served the bands future needs in terms of what he could do on drums.
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Judas Priest’s “Rocka Rolla” Serving The Hard Rock For 40 Years (1974-2014)

Raise the glasses my Metal friends because today is a monumental occasion for sure as we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of an album called “Rocka Rolla” which is the very release by the mighty Judas Priest. Now I will admit that I did NOT purchase this when it came out since I was not actually in the consumer age group at the time and I wouldn’t actually hear this specific work on LP until 1980 or 1981 so my reflections about it come from that particular time. I also don’t really get into the hard core production aesthetics of the release since so much of that is documented with finesse on the albums official Wikipedia entry. These are aimed at my own impressions on the work when I first got to absorb it and now back to the task at hand. The album “Rocka Rolla” is a very interesting one in Judas Priests history because not only is it their first but it’s also not quite a Metal album. Yes there are moments that surely “rock” across its contents, but overall the album is very steeped in Hard Rock, Blues and even bears some Psycehedelic elements. I was the kid on my block that got the others around him to listen to Judas Priest and with that influence created a certain fanaticism in one of them as he became the absolute diehard who sought out all of their past works. I began my own Priest journey with “Hell Bent For Leather” and “Stained Class” and from there I went backward. Now back to the debut.
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