1987: Heart of a Lion appears on an album by a respected but little-known rock band from Los Angeles, Racer X. The song, written by Rob Halford, Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing, has a crushing riff and an unforgettable chorus quintessential Judas Priest. Yet it will never show up on a regular Priest album. Racer Xs drummer: Scott Travis. 1990: Travis, having left Racer X, records Painkiller with his new band, Judas Priest. 1993: Halford and Travis leave Judas Priest to form the harder-edged Fight. It goes nowhere. 1997: Halford and John Lowery (later called John5 with Marilyn Manson) form the industrial duo Two, produced by Trent Reznor. Travis has gone back to Judas Priest to record and tour with front man Ripper Owens. 2000: Fighting unprecedented invisibility, Halford releases Resurrection with his new band, Halford, which sounds suspiciously like Judas Priest. 2001: Two studio songs are tacked on to Halfords nominally live Live Insurrection, and one of them is a blistering version of Heart of a Lion that sounds exactly like Judas Priest. 2004: Judas Priest releases the retrospective box Metalogy, which includes a demo version of Heart of a Lion recorded by Priest in the 80s. During communications about the box, the idea of a reunion has come up. Judas Priest, including Halford and Travis, go on the Ozzfest tour. 2005: Judas Priest, with the same lineup that made Painkiller, drop Angel of Retribution. The circle is closed.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!