Judas Priest don’t seem to get the same level of respect as many of their heavy metal brethren at the top. It’s a puzzling thing because they are one of the most important British heavy metal bands to ever exist. They have stayed at the top of their game & seen a resurgence in popularity in the last few years.
Creating a top 10 of best Judas Priest songs was one of the hardest I’ve had to do. My initial list had 22 songs in total & I couldn’t see how I could eliminate any. In the end some really tough decisions were made…here are the top 10 Judas Priest songs.
10 – Love Bites (Defenders of the Faith)
A brooding opening sets the scene nicely…Love Bites is a vampire song & one with plenty of teeth. Swooping along with Halford’s iconic vocals & a riff that could only come from Priest, it might sound basic at first but really showcases the bands talent near the end.
9 – Living After Midnight (British Steel)
One of the catchiest songs Priest songs to date that focuses on the rebellious spirit of the early 1980’s. It’s a slower number that is foot-tappingly good with an amazing guitar solo about the 2 minute mark. Rob Halford’s vocals are simple but instantly memorable.
8 – Hell Bent For Leather (Killing Machine)
This is one of the bands most famous songs & sums up Priest perfectly…great vocals from Rob Halford, catchy riffs & complementary drums with a great guitar solo thrown in. It’s a song that sticks in your head for a long time afterwards.
7 – Ram It Down (Ram It Down)
The note that Halford hits at the opening would make dogs react…it is that high. This is a nice pacey song that is all about heavy metal & really ups its game nearer the end with one of Priests greatest guitar solos. It’s just unbelievable & is pure talent on show.
6 – Turbo Lover (Turbo)
This has such an 80’s vibe with Rob Halford really showcasing this vocal abilities. It screams sex, drugs & rock & roll all wrapped up in denim & leather. The synths & guitar solos make Turbo Lover one of the most memorable Priest songs ever.
5 – Judas Rising (Angel of Retribution)
Possibly the most epic song Judas Priest have ever created & one that has plenty of intent. Judas Priest are a force to be reckoned with & this song showcases a band comfortable with their slot in metal.
4 – United (British Steel)
Judas Priest have written some of the most memorable & catchy songs ever & United is just a pure crowd sing-along…and I love every minute of it. Halford’s vocals & delivery are what stands out here. It’s a song that should speak to every metal-head even if it’s not to your taste.
(It’s worth noting that these next 3 songs could all have been in the No.1 spot. They are all that good.)
3 – Painkiller (Painkiller)
The opening drum solo of Painkiller sets the song up nicely…this is a fast & heavy Priest song with 2 guitar solos & some of Halford’s more intense singing. It doesn’t let up for a second & demands that you bang your head non-stop. The build up near the end of the song is just killer.
2 – The Sentinel (Defenders of the Faith)
The guitar lets you know you’re listening to something special from the very start. It is an amazing intro that leads into some of the strongest vocals & music Priest have ever played. This is a heavy song but filled with melody & guitar solos. The slow-down section is just so intense & evil sounding.
1 – Night Crawler (Painkiller)
The song that made me sit up & take notice, one of Priests more darker songs with a gothic opening before an incredible riff/drum combo just destroys. Rob Halford’s vocals & lyrics are pure gold here & it is near-impossible to find fault with any part of the song. Fast & heavy with an intense middle point made of a guitar solo & dark slow section, Night Crawler is the Judas Priest song everyone knows.