“The Chosen Few” by Judas Priest

Artist: Judas Priest
Title: “The Chosen Few”
Label: Sony Legacy
Release Date: 10/11/2011
Genre: Heavy Metal
Rating: 2.5/5

After forty plus years of putting some incredible Heavy Metal music in the faces of their fans, the guys in Judas Priest have embarked on their “Epitaph” tour and plan for the most part to call it a career. It’s not the same news that the Scorpions gave as far as a full on band retirement, but the Priest said that no more worldwide extended touring will happen and that fans can still expect some new recordings when the inspiration comes to them. That news brings us to the very latest release by Judas Priest which is entitled “The Chosen Few” and well, how do I best describe this to you…….

Have you ever had one of those head to head discussions with your Metal peers about what songs by a certain band are the most relevant and why? If you have ever found this being the case then you can best view “The Chosen Few” as this very same discussion but as had by a number of Metal luminaries and then released on a CD. The 17 song compilation piece covers a wide breadth of the bands repertoire and considering how some albums are more important than others in the larger scheme of things, we get more tracks from some than from others while certain releases are ignored altogether. For me the premise while an interesting one, is one that at the end of the day makes me say “So What”. To be brutally honest, I love what I love from Judas Priest and so do the scores of Metal heads that I call friends but I hardly care about what song of theirs that Geoff Tate has or David Coverdale and the rest. It makes for interesting side observation but this is hardly the best idea for a release. There is a coolness factor in the aspect of each artist lines out the “why the track is favored” but I really don’t want to see this become the new trend in endless greatest hits compilations. I add to this how some of the tunes didn’t really ring true to my Metal senses. Kerry King’s favorite Priest tune is “Delivering The Goods”? Then why didn’t Slayer cover that one as opposed to “Dissident Agressor”; a song that is selected by both Tate and Steve Vai. On the same token there were choices that made sense to me such as Lemmy’s love for “Breaking The Law” and Zakk Wylde’s “Grinder”. I was surprised to find Eddie Trunk’s name left off this collection as he has always championed The Priest and would have likely offered a great tune to the mix.

My overall rating is low with no insult to the Priest who remain in my top three bands of all time with KISS and Van Halen (the original one of course) and is more based on the actual idea of this and how it should by no means become the next trend. I would have actually preferred new versions of these songs by the artists who were polled and I also think I would have liked to see more of today’s bands being represented rather than many of the expected ones. Another lowlight is the absolute lack of any band photographs or even album art. The eight page booklet only offers you those musicians’ liner notes about the tracks but this is very quick reading. This release is for a limited audience for sure or the Judas Priest completist who must have everything that they dish out. Should you be seeking a more comprehensive collection of Judas Priest staples, may I recommend the super affordable “Metalogy” boxed set. That gives you four CD’s and a DVD and is much more enjoyable at the end of the day.

Track Listing:
1. Diamonds And Rust
2. Dissident Aggressor
3. Exciter
4. Beyond The Realms Of Death
5. Delivering The Goods
6. The Green Manalishi (With The Two-Pronged Crown)
7. The Ripper
8. Victim Of Changes
9. Breaking The Law
10. Rapid Fire
11. Grinder
12. Living After Midnight
13. Screaming For Vengeance
14. You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’
15. The Sentinel
16. Turbo Lover
17. Painkiller

Official Website: http://www.judaspriest.com

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