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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Judas Priest

Ram It Down

Review by Gary Hill

For my money this was almost an apology for the album that preceded it, Turbo. That disc was barely metal and really only was saved by Rob Halford’s spectacular vocal performance. Well, they come right out of the gate screaming on this one and for the most part they manage to deliver throughout. This isn’t one of the best Judas Priest albums, but it’s still quite good and has a few tracks that are truly exceptional.

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Track by Track Review
Ram It Down
Halford's scream starts this, and we're off into a smoking hot metal stomper. This is furious and crunchy. It also has a catchy chorus hook to ground it well. This is classic Judas Priest at its best. The guitar solo leans toward technical metal and is really pretty amazing. This is just an awesome stomper.
Heavy Metal
Okay, ignoring the ultimate in cliched titles, this opens with guitar riffing then moves after a time to a straightforward rocking structure.
Love Zone
Perhaps not the most typical Judas Priest song, this is nonetheless a strong rocker and it’s got some smoking guitar soloing.
Come and Get It
This one comes in feeling a bit like Sammy Hagar does Judas Priest, but the screaming solos and Halford's snarl leave no doubt that this is the Priest. Lyrically this is quite cliched, but the stomping sound will make you ignore that.
Hard as Iron
Here’s a trademark Judas Priest powerhouse anthem. This is a bit overproduced at times, but it’s also quite empowering. I like it a lot.
Blood Red Skies
This metal ballad has always had a killer forlorn texture that makes it a favorite of mine.
I'm a Rocker
Yeah, it’s a generic title – and even a bit silly. The track has a bit of a generic nature, but it still rocks out better than that title would make you think it would.
Johnny B. Goode
So, you say you never thought you’d hear Judas Priest cover Chuck Berry? Well, I’m with you there. The thing is, it works much better than you might think. Still, there are some elements of Turbo in this cut.
Love You to Death

This pounds in heavy and very cool. It’s got more of that percussive based anthem approach, but yet reminds me quite a bit of something from Point of Entry. I also hear Black Sabbath’s “Zero the Hero” on this.

Monsters of Rock
A plodding, but still rather cool, piece, this is much in the mode of “Metal Gods.” Of course, lyrically this has two meanings. One side of this calls to mind some giant creature that is along the lines of the creatures in “Metal Gods.” But looking at it a different way the lyrics tell the tale of heavy metal coming across the sea from England to the US.
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