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Judas Priest

Turbo 30

Review by Gary Hill
This brand new 30th Anniversary edition of Turbo is classy stuff. Sure, Turbo is arguably the weakest album in Priest's catalog, but this set has the major bonus of a double CD live set. That makes it well worth having. The packaging is great, too. All in all, this is a great release. I should mention that, since I've already reviewed the original album (and that's CD one here), I've used that review as the next paragraph of the overall review and the track by track review of the first CD.

When this album first came out, it almost seemed like a slap in the face. The reliance on guitar synthesizers and the more mainstream rock sound really didn’t work well for Judas Priest. In retrospective, though, it’s actually a decent album. It’s only when you compare it to other Priest discs that it winds up weak. It’s still well worth having, though. It should be noted that I reviewed a few of these songs previously on the box set review. So, in those cases the reviews here are modified from those reviews for the sake of consistency.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2017  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Disc 1

            
Turbo Lover

This cut is actually one of the strongest from the disc. With that mind, the comparison to the rest of the material in the Priest catalog is a dramatic contrast.

Locked In
The guitar riff that opens this has a real Judas Priest does Chuck Berry sound to it. The synthesizer on this is odd and doesn’t fit the Priest, though. The chorus musical hook is a little trite. The vocals on this cut, though, elevate it. It’s actually another of the strongest pieces here. The instrumental section (and particularly the dual guitar work out) on this is another thing that really elevates the cut.
Private Property
With its keyboard intro and generic lyrics, this one definitely doesn't cut it.
Parental Guidance
An anthem for the teenybopper crowd, this one is just plain silly lyrically. It seems to have been going for a rather generic '80s metal sound musically.
Rock You All Around the World
The guitar riff that opens this one (and the soloing over the top on the introduction) are more trademark Judas Priest than just about anything else here. The song itself, though, has a Chuck Berry vibe to it and is rather trite and rather weak.
Out in the Cold
This ballad is actually one that works quite well. That said, the keyboards are still a bit troubling.
Wild Nights, Hot & Crazy Days

First off, this is more of a Priest metallic rocker. It’s just a little generic and the guitar synths really don’t work well on it, either. This is Priest. It just lacks some of the Priest magic.

Hot for Love
Keyboards start this off in a very non-Priest like way. The guitar riff that joins, though, is quite Priest-like. They turn it out to a pretty lackluster cut, though. It’s not bad. It’s just too generic. The pre-chorus is tasty, though.
Reckless
Arguably, this is the most Judas Priest like tune here. It’s not one of the most memorable things the band have ever done, but the guitar is strong and the singing works well. It’s got some great moments.
Disc 2
                   

Out in the Cold

A  Priest concert starting with keyboards is a strange thing. That said, this is such a cool song, really. While I prefer the studio version of this, the live take is quite strong.

Locked In
This is purely on fire. They really scream through it from start to finish. It's classic and classy Priest.
Heading Out to the Highway
I've always been a big fan of this song. This isn't the best live recording I've heard of it, but it's still very good. It's a screaming hot tune no matter what.
Metal Gods
Another classic old school Priest song, this gets a solid live airing. It's not a big change or surprise, but why should it be, really?
Breaking the Law
You definitely can't go wrong with this fast paced Judas Priest classic. Here we get a scorching live version that sounds great.
Love Bites
I'm not as big a fan of this song as I am some other Priest tunes. That said, this live take really elevates it. It's screaming hot and really works extremely well.
Some Heads Are Gonna Roll
Speaking of "screaming hot," that really applies to this. I've always loved this song. As much as I like the studio version, this one really surpasses it. This might be the best take on this cut that I've ever heard.
The Sentinel
I love the guitar soloing on this thing. I don't remember the song ever sounding this hot. It's just so cool. Of course, the lyrical concepts and musical textures of the tune have always worked well.
Private Property
This cut comes from the Turbo studio album, which means it's not as good in terms of source material as a lot of the other stuff here.  That said, though, this live rendition really manages to elevate it into a screaming hot hard rocker.
Desert Plains
Now, here we get another that's among Priest's best. This live version is on fire. They do a drop back to just percussion at voice before the final power up that serves to take the piece to its close.
Rock You All Around the World
I'm not as big a fan of this song, but the live version is strong. The ending section is particularly incendiary.
Disc 3

The Hellion

It's weird hearing this in the middle of the show rather than at the start. This is the classic instrumental intro that is more often than not the start of Judas Priest shows.

Electric Eye
This screamer always works so well. This live version is no exception.
Turbo Lover
Although I'm not the biggest fan of the Turbo album, I really do like this song. It's different, but it works. This live version is stronger than the studio rendition, too.
Freewheel Burning
This is a fast and furious song. Of course, that's because the studio version is just that. All that said, though, this is fierce and does that studio recording every bit of justice possible.
Victim of Changes
You just can't argue with this song ever. Here they tear into a scorching hot live rendition. This is actually one of the better live versions I've heard, and I've heard a lot of them. I like this a lot.
The Green Manalishi
Peter Green may have written this song and recorded it with Fleetwood Mac, but Judas Priest's version is one of their trademarks. This always works, and this is not the exception that proves the rule. It's on fire.
Living After Midnight
Here's another example of a Priest song that just can't go wrong. This is a faithful and killer rendition.
You've Got Another Thing Coming
There is a bit of a call and response section between Halford and the crowd at the start of this. Then they fire out into another JP classic. This is crunchy and energized. There is another crowd interaction section mid-track, too.
Hell Bent for Leather
They close the show with this biker anthem. It starts with the sound of Halford's Harley. Then some killer guitar sonics take over for a bit. From there we're taken into the song proper, and it's another exceptional rendition.
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