“Rising In The East” by Judas Priest

Artist: Judas Priest
Title: “Rising In The East”
Label: Rhino Music
Release Date: 11/15/2005
Genre: Heavy Metal
Rating: 8.5/10

If you were a smart Metal head then you made sure that you caught one of the performances done by Judas Priest when they toured earlier this year. The band was supporting their newest epic entitled “Angel Of Retribution” and had partnered up with both Queensryche and Anthrax on various legs of this tour. Truly this was a high mark on music as both of these events (album and tour) were very anticipated since Priest had reunited with singer Rob Halford. The band gave us a teaser set when they were one of the main bands on the 2004 Ozzfest Stage. If you ask anyone who attended that festival you will probably find them agreeing that the reunited Judas Priest was perhaps the best part of the show. Filmed at the legendary Budokan theatre this DVD Film captures the entire 2 hour show and not one track seems to have been cut. In America, we did not have all of these songs and perhaps this was due to venue restrictions. With this film we now have the chance to enjoy the songs we did not get to see. Overall the quality of the video and sound are superb and done in such a manner that you feel as if you were front stage while the band performed. I enjoyed reliving this as I had attended a couple of the appearances and I truly felt that the whole show was a major highlight with little room for disappointment. The music of Judas Priest is something that I have enjoyed since I was about 16 and watching this DVD clearly helps to affirm their status as Legends or “Metal Gods”. The band is the “Painkiller” lineup with Halford, Downing, Tipton, Hill and Travis. 1980’s drummer Dave Holland had not returned and thankfully so when you consider his replacement is Scott Travis. He is a superb drummer who brings a new life to the radio “hits” that the band had as well as performing admirably on the classic tracks like “Exciter” and “Beyond The Realms Of Death”.

Everyone in the band performs in top-notch fashion and while Halford does not always hit the epic highs we knew him once capable of you will find it makes little difference as you watch. The song selection is great and touches upon albums such as “British Steel”, “Screaming For Vengeance” and many more. The new CD gets a significant representation on the DVD as well with six tracks being from the album. On the record I felt that a couple of songs fell short but in the live sense they are heavier and more driving. It is my guess that you will find yourself playing air-guitar in your living room as you watch. It seems as though K.K. Downing and Glen Tipton have a way of bringing that out in people. On early reviews of the tour the band was listed as playing “Green Manalishi” and I was not happy to see this tune absent from the DVD. It was a long time favorite of mine but overall the set list is very comprehensive. Tracks I don’t recall seeing at my shows are “The Ripper”, and “Worth Fighting For”.

I hold the same critiques about the DVD as I did with the show I saw. They really had nothing to do with the music but more in some of the time-wasting that is done during a Judas Priest show. Rob Halford’s “rap” to the audience has always left me wanting and the lackluster guitar break that Glen does is pointless. He is such a killer guitarist during the songs and I expected a lot more from him in this capacity. His audience participation guitar thing is clearly to incite some reaction from the crowd and these screams were certainly not in short supply at this show. There are no bonus features included on this film and if you desire interview or reunion retro commentary you need to pick up the new album as it comes with a DVD featuring this content. This DVD is just the full concert with more or less 2 hours of classic and new Judas Priest music. Given that, did we really even need bonus stuff represented? Judas Priest has also given us some great products of late with “Electric Eye” DVD as well as the very affordable “Metalogy” boxed set. Not a bad amount of stuff in 2 years time and let us only hope that this continues. This is a perfect souvenir if you saw the show or just love Priest. A recommended DVD for all Metal fans from back in the day and a must have for those that don’t realize where a lot of this music started from. Let’s see how many other Heavy Metal bands will be doing after 30 years.

Song Listing:
1. The Hellion
2. Electric Eye
3. Metal Gods
4. Riding On The Wind
5. The Ripper
6. A Touch Of Evil
7. Judas Rising
8. Revolution
9. Hot Rockin’
10. Breaking The Law
11. I’m A Rocker
12. Diamonds And Rust
13. Worth Fighting For
14. Deal With The Devil
15. Beyond The Realms Of Death
16. Turbo Lover
17. Hellrider
18. Victim Of Changes
19. Exciter
20. Painkiller
21. Hell Bent For Leather
22. Living After Midnight
23. You’ve Got Another Thing Coming

Official Web site: www.JudasPriest.com

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