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Articles Home » 2008 Articles » Judas Priest - 2008 Nostradamus
 
Judas Priest - 2008 Nostradamus



ARTIST: Judas Priest
ALBUM: Nostradamus
LABEL: Epic
SERIAL: 88697307082
YEAR: 2008

COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:

LINEUP: Rob Halford - vocals * K.K Downing - guitars * Glenn Tipton - guitars * Ian Hill - bass * Scott Travis - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Dawn Of Creation (sc) * 02 Prophecy * 03 Awakening (sc) * 04 Revelations * 05 The Four Horsemen (sc) * 06 War * 07 Sands Of Time (sc) * 08 Pestilence And Plague * 09 Death * 10 Peace (sc) * 11 Conquest * 12 Lost Love * 13 Persecution * 14 Solitude (sc) * 15 Exiled * 16 Alone * 17 Shadows In The Flame (sc) * 18 Visions * 19 Hope (sc) * 20 New Beginnings * 21 Calm Before The Storm (sc) * 22 Nosatradamus * 23 Future Of Mankind

RATING:

WEBLINKS: www.judaspriest.com


Background
At this stage of Priest's career, approaching forty years, attempting a two CD concept album about the life and times of the prophet Nostradamus could be seen as either self indulgent or brave. Add a running time of over 100 minutes and fans are looking at some time consuming listening. Being of the old school variety the concept of the album leaves me somewhat cold, it's the music which does the talking and that is the single critical factor in determining the success of Priest's 16th studio foray. In total there are 23 total tracks, 14 regular tracks and 9 short cuts (which we will refer to in the tracklisting as 'sc'.. Ed), many of which are lead-in instrumentals. The process of sitting through each of these is quite a task, and to be honest this epic stance is reminiscent of Iron Maiden's overdrawn adventures, and one Priest haven't attempted to this degree in their career. The results are sometimes uneven, an abundance of mid paced tracks plundering the orchestral keyboard approach to maintain that 16th century atmosphere, but often steeped in the sound of early Priest, a treat for all Priest fans.


The Songs
This will test the most ardent of Priest fanatics at the same time and I'm sure not many will appreciate the depth to the Nostradamus storyline, which admittedly fails to move me. Instead it's the heavy doom filled riffs of 'Death' which I'm more prone to picking up on, and those with a taste for 'Sad Wings Of Destiny' will enjoy this. Fast tracks in the traditional Priest style are few and far between, two examples being the rampaging title cut, Priest at their heaviest, and another take on the 'Painkiller' sound they've been wreaking havoc with since 1990. 'Persecution' moves at speed, mixing some 80's riffing with deft keyboard touches and the expected endless soloing from Downing and Tipton. An instant classic, especially with Halford screaming himself into oblivion. I thought I'd been transported back to 'Turbo' listening to 'Revelations', a high tech affair with more of the keyboards which run the show through the whole album. More of this can be heard on 'War', which pushes the orchestration into orbit. With slower tracks like 'Lost Love' and 'New Beginnings' reaching ballad levels, I assume more than a few metalheads will be screaming for more faster tracks. 'Pestilence and Plague' has a massive gallop in its steps, but it recalls Manowar's recent operatic bumblings, and it's only the guitar solos which save some of these unnecessarily overlong compositions. Many of the numerous instrumentals are atmospheric, such as 'Solitude', which could be from the 1974 debut, but many are easily skipped at the same time due to being filler, despite the intentions of atmosphere. 'Conquest' is an anthem in the making musically, but the constant keyboards take away Priest's real power sorry to say. 'Visions' is a classic happily, vintage Priest chorus straight from any era, markedly 80's, the riffs chugging away nicely. Album closer 'Future Of Mankind' works because, surprise, the lack of keyboards initially, but they soon creep in, and this gives it the Maiden vibe of all their recent albums. The best instrumental is 'Calm Before The Storm', which takes the best of Priest's slower 70's work and combines them all into two minutes, Dream Deceiver' meets 'Beyond the Realms Of Death'. Too many tracks however are similar in structure, 'Alone' and 'Exile' both slow and building up as they go, but stifled by the keyboards and lack of real aggression, which clearly wasn't the blueprint for 'Nostradamus.'


In Summary
A lot to digest and it took repeated listenings for me to form a proper opinion of this without being overly critical. A massive labour of love for the band obviously and years in the making, and a bold attempt to break new ground. Like Maiden however the lack of shorter 3-4 minute songs with metallic urgency detract from the concept here. Priest, as they did with 2005's 'Angel of Retribution', have welded a compendium of sounds spanning their whole career into this double album, but it veers too heavily into the bands softer side. The odd exception aside, the title track for one, is what most will want to hear, but is in short supply here. This is far from awful, I just don't know if it's what metal fans really want from Priest.


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Comments
#1 | jeffduran on June 18 2008 04:23:44
Just too complicated for my tastes. Some good moments but would rather hear those four minute burners. Still glad Halford is fronting this legendary matal outfit!
#2 | gdazegod on June 18 2008 04:54:51
They really just need to get back to the basics IMHO. Albums like 'Stained Class', 'Killing Machine' and perhaps 'British Steel'. Just good ol' headbanging anthems! Nothing more.. nothing less!
#3 | george_the_jack on June 18 2008 12:18:14
Sad to realize that the 'Priest'' of vocals has almost run out of voice..Signs of the time
#4 | MUSCLE on June 28 2008 03:55:47
and I thought pete townshends white city album from 1985 was the worst concept album of all time..
#5 | dangerzone on June 28 2008 12:09:52
That might be worse than 'Ironman'.
#6 | MUSCLE on June 28 2008 14:34:39
to think these freaks spent three years in a studio honing this pile of crap. sitting around a table discussing themes plot song structre and then obviously assuming that the material they had before them was such genius that priest fans all over the world would collapse into a quivering wreck of unbridled joy upon hearing a 23 song near two hour concept album based upon the life and times of some old fart named nostradamus. self delusion at its grandest. imagine actually paying for this piece o shite.
#7 | dangerzone on June 29 2008 00:41:06
They've reached the point now that they are too good for 'Metal Meltdown' or 'Leather Rebel'. 'We've moved on.'
#8 | MUSCLE on June 29 2008 05:41:21
i hear the new ac/dc album is a 35 song triple disc concept album based upon the life and times of infamous australian outlaw ned kelly. in a recent interview angus stated that it was made with the express intention of honouring bon scott. 'cause you know mate he were a bit of a rebel himself. only difference being that he did his fighting with mic in hand and his voice soaring amongst the eagles. jesus christ mate i loved that bastard. scotty mate this is for you. i fuken miss ya mate. have a good one mate. hope ya rocking up there with all the boys'. a dvd will also be released alongside the album highlighting the emotional journey the band went through whilst recording. at one stage a teary eyed brian johnson can be seen angrily asking the film crew to 'turn the fookin thing off...bastards....fookin bastards' as he sings an unreleased bon scott song entitled 'its got me in its grip'. which details his hellish descent into a booze fuelled oblivion brought about by the pressures of global rock stardom.
#9 | dangerzone on June 29 2008 06:12:36
Tracklisting for disc 1 is as follows:
Flashpoint, Timebomb, It's Got Me In It's Grip, Wizard, Chinatown, Break In the Action, Red Lion, We Are the Ninja, Night of the Axe,
#10 | gdazegod on June 29 2008 08:23:27
Oh dear, what is the world coming to?
#11 | MUSCLE on June 29 2008 13:52:51
disc three will contain a cover version of the glorious beach boys track 'california girls' subtley retitled 'aussie girls'. naturally the lyrics have been changed to suit australian sensabilities. backing vocals supplied by jimmy barnes, johnny farnham, john paul young, doc neeson, angry anderson and roger daltrey. the track will be released as a single in conjunction with a promotional blitz for the australian olympic team.
#12 | jeffduran on June 29 2008 20:04:32
Funny stuff guys...
#13 | gdazegod on June 29 2008 20:36:57
Dylan, do we have a release date on that single? Presumably before the Olympics? No doubt we'll be hearing it hit the FM/classic rock stations down under before then.. ?
#14 | jeffduran on June 29 2008 22:04:46
Upcoming titles for new AC/DC include: 'Blood Alley', 'Who Phoned The Law', 'Chain Gang On The Road', 'Chase The Tail', 'Stroke Of Luck', 'Totally Baked', 'Jack And Coke', 'Slipped Off The Bone', 'Deemed Evil'
#15 | MUSCLE on June 30 2008 00:12:55
you know george i wrote this tongue in cheek but the more i think about it the more awesome the whole concept sounds. maybe i should try and contact angus and pitch the idea to him. afterall it couldnt be anymore cornball than the ballbreaker album which for me contains the rudest/funniest lyrics in rock history.
#16 | gdazegod on June 30 2008 01:09:51
I reckon they should leave the big arenas alone, and go out and do what AIRBOURNE have done, and play smaller venues. Man, just imagine if they played the pub circuit in Australia! I think they'd drain the pubs dry of beer wherever they went - and that wouldn't be a small feat by any stretch of the imagination! Thumbs Up
#17 | dangerzone on July 03 2008 00:48:34
Also some variety in the setlist would be change. I wonder who really gets excited hearing 'Back in Black' or 'Highway to Hell'. They should revive 'Landslide' and 'Playing with Girls' at least once before they die!
#18 | dangerzone on July 14 2008 02:14:48
One month later and I think this could be the worst metal album of all time.
#19 | Hardlover on March 19 2009 15:22:35
Absolute crap. Dated, tricky power metal. Their worst effort. Avoid!
#20 | dangerzone on April 22 2009 22:06:10
Thumbs UpGeorge, do me a favor and make the rating 1!
#21 | gdazegod on April 22 2009 22:45:47
I don't think I have a 1/10 graphic in the system. I coul bring it down to 3?
#22 | MUSCLE on December 15 2010 20:14:56
pure filthscore 1hilarious
 
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