It was an exciting time to be a Heavy Metal fan and a supporter of the absolutely legendary Judas Priest for you see not only has the band released an incendiary album with “Firepower”; but they’ve also landed on the Billboard Top 200 Charts which is pretty damned cool in this day and age. “Firepower” is the bands 18th album, and trust me it’s a molten one and worthy of addition to your music library. In honor of the release, the folks at Sony Square NYC have set up a small gallery of archival photos and some stage costumes along with other trinkets that you don’t generally get to see up close and personal. I did a walk-through video and photographic narrative of the gallery about a week ago and if you didn’t see that post just click HERE to be brought to that story, and then you can return to the topic at hand.
With the band on tour for the new album, it was decided that Judas Priest members would come to Sony Square NYC for an album signing. You had to purchase the album on CD, LP or cassette in order to get one of the wristbands but once you did you were golden to come in and say hello to the guys and get your shiny new album signed. I wasn’t going to miss being one of the media flies on the wall for such an appearance so over to the SSNYC space I went and after securing the credentials was told that around 5:45PM the band would be making a grand entrance. Who would show up for this I had to wonder but before I could think anything more about it I realized that I was right near the albums producer Andy Sneap. By now most of the Priest fans of the world know that Andy has stepped into Glenn Tipton’s shoes for touring purposes after the musician had to stop touring for health reasons. Sneap is also a member of the band Hell and has about 100 albums to his credit in terms of producing. Not too shabby right.
Some scurrying of security staff started to commence and then the sirens were heard and up rolled one of the powerful firetrucks of our city’s incredible New York Fire Department. When they went right to the corner I thought that they were responding to a call, but when the mighty machine started to back up I knew that they were only answering the call of Heavy Metal this afternoon as the member of Judas Priest began to exit the vehicle. Drummer Scott Travis came out first and he was followed by guitarist Richie Faulkner. A moment or three passed by and a small group started walking toward us. It was bassist Ian Hill, The Metal God himself Rob Halford and wait, could I be seeing things? Was that Glenn Tipton walking with Rob?!? Yes my friends Glenn Tipton was here as well and that was an awesome sight to behold. The cheers of those in attendance who were close enough to see were resounding.
Once inside, the media folks were able to gather in a small corral while the band members got ready for the signing. Over the speakers they were playing parts of “Redeemer Of Souls”, the live album “Battle Cry” and of course the brand new “Firepower” and eventually the guys all came out. I snapped what I could but they didn’t have a lot of proper light on them which was strange since usually these are very well lit events and I did what I could. A healthy group of contest winners went up to the band first and while it seemed as though they were signing other things that people brought along with them, there were NO personal photos allowed with the band. It’s not a popular decision in the fans eyes but in the interest of time one has to deal with it so the whole crowd can be processed and get their album signed. Between groups I even had the chance to pass through and say hello and thank them for all the music they have given us. It was great to be a part of this and to see Glenn at the appearance. With the band performing tomorrow at the Prudential Center one has to wonder if that show will be one of the appearances that he has eluded to in statements on the official Priest channels. One can only hope. I will be at the show tomorrow as well and have learned that there are still tickets available so if you consider yourself a Heavy Metal fan at all you want to be rallying for the Priest when they come a calling. Until next time.
PHOTOS COMING LATER
Official Website: http://www.judaspriest.com