Metalheads in Indy got a rare treat when Judas Priest played Monday night in a venue - Murat Theatre - that was rather intimate given the band's ability to fill arenas and amphitheaters. As promised, the band played the entirety of their 1980 album British Steel
, moving from "Rapid Fire" through "Grinder," including a particularly awesome "United" and a killer version of "The Rage."
By the time they had finished "Steeler," it was evident that Rob Halford and his boys were enjoying the experience of playing before fans held in rapt adoration. K.K. Downing, Glenn Tipton and Halford often walked the lip of the stage, slapping hands and beaming.
Then they really poured it on. "Victim of Changes" and "The Ripper" from Sad Wings of Destiny
were raw, unfettered chunks of old school metal that gave Downing and Tipton a chance to show off. "Nostradamus," the sole new song in the set, was a hoot and showed the band doesn't need to rely on nostalgia to make a living.
They wrapped up the show with the best of the immediate post-British Steel
era, playing gigantic-sounding versions of "Rock Hard - Ride Free" and "Freewheel Burning" before ending with the obligatory "You've Got Another Thing Comin'." At one point during "Freewheel," Halford bent down on one knee and let loose a blood-curdling scream.
As the show closed, K.K. Downing dropped his pick to a guy in the front row. I looked at the dude and he was crying like a little girl. I couldn't blame him; it was a show that will undoubtedly be talked about for years to come.