judaspriestdeendersera600 Coming off an era which saw several Judas Priest albums that have gone down as some of the greatest in the entire history of heavy metal (namely, 1980’s British Steel and 1982’s Screaming for Vengeance), the band from Birmingham knew that their next release had to “deliver the goods,” to cement their standing as the leaders of metal. And deliver they did, with their platinum-certified 1984 release, Defenders of the Faith, which spawned such headbanging classics as Freewheel Burning, Jawbreaker, The Sentinel, Some Heads Are Gonna Roll, and Love Bites.

And on March 10th, 2015, a newly expanded three-CD version of the album will be unleashed via Columbia/Legacy, which includes the original ten-track album remastered by producer Tom Allom, and a complete live recording from the Defenders tour, recorded at the Long Beach Arena in California, on May 5th, 1984.

The 21-track concert (split up over two discs) perfectly balances the then-new material from the group’s ninth studio offering overall, including such classics as Metal Gods, Breaking the Law, Sinner, Electric Eye, The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown), Victim of Changes, and You’ve Got Another Thing Coming, among many others.

As the band states in the liner notes to the reissue, “It’s 30 years since we released ‘Defenders of the Faith’ – we’re very proud to say it has become a classic that’s beloved by Priest fans throughout the world”

Judas Priest continues to “defend the faith” to this day, as the group recently issued their seventeenth studio album, Redeemer of Souls, which sees the band’s popularity amongst metalheads remain as strong as ever, as it debuted higher than any other previous Priest release (at #6 on the Billboard 200). And on the group’s current tour, quite a few classics from ‘Defenders’ are being performed for the first time in years.

And soon, fans will get a chance to re-experience vintage Judas Priest, with the Defenders of the Faith reissue.

CD1: Defenders of the Faith‘ Re-Mastered

1. Freewheel Burning
2. Jawbreaker
3. Rock Hard Ride Free
4. The Sentinel
5. Love Bites
6. Eat Me Alive
7. Some Heads Are Gonna Roll
8. Night Comes Down
9. Heavy Duty
10. Defenders of the Faith

CD2: Live at Long Beach Arena, California 5th May 1984

1. Love Bites
2. Jawbreaker
3. Grinder
4. Metal Gods
5. Breaking the Law
6. Sinner
7. Desert Plains
8. Some Heads Are Gonna Roll
9. The Sentinel
10. Rock Hard Ride Free

CD3: Live at Long Beach Arena, California 5th May 1984

1. Night Comes Down
2. The Hellion
3. Electric Eye
4. Heavy Duty
5. Defenders of the Faith
6. Freewheel Burning
7. Victim of Changes
8. The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown)
9. Living After Midnight
10. Hell Bent For Leather
11. You’ve Got Another Thing Coming


19 Responses

  1. Awkward seeing Dave Holland in that photo. YES I know he was the drummer at the time. But I’m sure Priest would like to erase that fact from history if they could.

  2. I love DEFENDERS OF THE FAITH and even though I’ve heard it a million times it’s worth it to buy this reissue just for the live cds! I bought the SCREAMING FOR VENGEANCE reissue that had the US Festival performance and it was very cool.

  3. Fantastic news! Re-mastered and the live cd! Great combo! It was great to hear them do Jawbreaker on the tour. I was hoping they would throw in The Sentinel as well…but no such luck.

    1. Ha ha, I was joking about the cover with a friend just a week or two ago! What is that supposed to be!? We’ve got compound mouths, giant horns/antennae, metal claw guards, tank treads, gatling guns, and a cannon turret on top. And a mustache. Then the whole thing seems to be enveloped in some kind of giant hot dog bun. Come to think of it, British Steel might be the last non-cringe worthy Priest album cover. I often waver between overall preference for Judas Priest or Iron Maiden in the “classic metal” category, but Maiden wins by a landslide in cool cover art over everyone – ever.

      I’ve always liked “Defenders” as an album though, it was one of the first Priest albums I got into as a kid. “The Sentinel” has always stood out to me as one of the best Glenn/K.K. “dueling” solos. I hope the remaster is good and doesn’t end up as one of those over compressed “loudness war” victims. Looking forward to the live discs, that’s how to do a reissue and get people interested in buying it again.

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