Judas Priest Album Update

Producer Andy Sneap shared an update on the new Judas Priest album, explaining to Hardwired Magazine:

“When I first got involved with them, I think we had about 26 ideas that we were working on, which we’ve whittled down to 14 or 15; we haven’t decided on a which songs or a running order for the album yet.

“I think it’s got a really good energy and some real classic moments on there. Rob’s [Halford] singing great, Richie’s [Faulkner] on fire on it.

“We really, really pushed the band to play together in the studio, and we actually took tempos from them playing together rather than the demos.

“Glenn [Tipton, guitar] originally wanted to work on it like they have done on the last few albums and use the demos as templates and work off that, and I made them actually play as a band.

“I think we’ve got quite a fresh feel on it and quite an old-school approach at times. We pushed Rob on varying the patterns up a little bit on the verses.”

Remembering the first band meeting regarding the album’s overall direction, Andy added:

“I didn’t even know Rob was gonna be there,” he said. “And I went down to Glenn’s house, and there was Glenn and Richie there. And the doorbell rang and it was Rob, and I was, like, ‘Oh, fucking hell.’ [Laughs]

“And I found myself, within 30 minutes, telling Rob how I wanted him to sing. And I [thought to myself] ‘Shut up! I’m telling Rob Halford how I want him to sing’ [Laughs].

“But he was totally cool. I was saying how I wanted some of that ‘British Steel’ mid-range in there. And he was, like, ‘Yeah, yeah. No problem. I don’t wanna sing like a pub singer. You’ve gotta push me a bit. I can be lazy.’

“Rob did great. I’ll tell you what: for someone who’s got that much experience, there’s no ego there at all.

“We’d do, like, six or seven passes, and I’d ask him to try something a bit [different] on this part, and he was, like, ‘No problem.’ And he’d give me another four takes with a slightly different vibe. And then me and Tom Allom would sit there and we’d comp it, and we pretty much agreed on everything.

“And the other thing… What Rob’s really good at is harmonizing with himself. And Tom’s really good at… I didn’t realize how much the classic Priest albums, a lot of the harmony ideas were Tom Allom’s influence. So Tom was there, and because he’s a keyboard player, he’d be singing harmonies to Rob, and Rob was nailing the harmonies like that.

“In fact, I got the multi-tracks from ‘Screaming for Vengeance’ from Tom Allom, and I think Rob is singing as well as he was back then, listening to it. You’re looking at something that was recorded in – what – 1982, when ‘Screaming’ was done.

“So 35 years ago. And for a guy 35 years on in his career… I mean, they’re playing in E flat now, so they are semitone down, but most bands are [these days].

“He’s nailing it. I took a vocal off ‘Screaming for Vengeance’ – I think it was a high F sharp — and I put it into one of the songs as a bit of a laugh. And Rob was, ‘Oh, that’s a good idea,’ and he just went and nailed it again. So if he can hit the high notes from ‘Screaming For Vengeance’, that’s quite impressive.”

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *