Judas Priest announce details of new album Nostradamus

From Billboard:

Over two years in the making, Judas Priest will finally unveil its 16th studio album, NOSTRADAMUS, June 17 via Epic in North America and a day earlier internationally.

A double-disc set that tells the story of the 16th century prophet, Michel de Nostredame (whose name is often ‘Latinized’ as Nostradamus), the release is Priest’s first-ever concept album, and was recorded throughout 2006 and 2007 at Old Smithy Studio in the UK.

“Making Nostradamus was a new experience for us in Judas Priest, insomuch as this was going to be a conceptual writing and recording event,” Priest singer Rob Halford tells Billboard.com. “His life is well-documented, so for us it was all about taking the significant episodes he went through, and then with the right emotion, create music and lyrics that would convey them.”

On the album, Halford, guitarists K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton, bassist Ian Hill, and drummer Scott Travis spread their stylistic wings, experimenting with symphonic orchestration and choirs.

Three configurations of Nostradamus will be issued. The most common will be a regular jewel-cased double CD, but there will also be a “CD deluxe hardbound version,” which features a 48-page booklet, while a “super deluxe version” will include three vinyl records (in addition to the CD deluxe packaging, plus a poster).

While there have been some European dates announced in support of Nostradamus (the chief one being a performance as part of this year’s Download Festival in England, which also features KISS and MOTÖRHEAD, among others), there will soon be an announcement about Priest’s plans for a U.S. tour.

In the meantime, Halford dropped a hint as to what’s in store for the group’s later headline dates. “As we recorded and listened to the music, and much like a lot of Priest songs, you cannot help but see images in your mind. We constantly thought about special effects and visual elements that will connect musically that we want to use onstage when we will perform all of ‘Nostradamus’ live,” he says. “Again, like every song we compose, the transition from studio to concert is one we think about and make sure we can deliver the goods.”

Here is the track list for Nostradamus:

Dawn Of Creation – “Prophecy”
Awakening – “Revelations”
The Four Horsemen – “War”
Sands Of Time – “Pestilence And Plague”
Peace – “Conquest”
“Lost Love”
Solitude – “Exiled”
Shadows In The Flame – “Visions”
Hope – “New Beginnings”
Calm Before The Storm – “Nostradamus”
“Future Of Mankind”


Rotting Corpse – Circus Of Fools DVD (2006)

Rotting Corpse – Circus Of Fools DVD (2006)  – A film by SPLarsen

(click on the picture for a close look at the Chapter list)

(Region 1, NTSC, Total Running Time including bonus features = 97 minutes)

Rotting Corpse – Circus Of Fools MySpace page
Rotting Corpse official website
Rotting Corpse MySpace page
Texas Metal Underground

Back in the ’80s, I used to be a big tape trader. You remember tape trading don’t you? You’d buy a Metal magazine and there would be tons of metalheads listed in the back that wanted to trade music. What a great scene it was, you could get Metal from all over the world! I started trading to get a lot of NWOBHM in the early ’80s but I included Hard Rock, Thrash, and Death Metal on my lists and I had a decent collection going. One of the bands I remember from back in the tape trading days was Texas Thrash band Rotting Corpse.

Back in the day, Rotting Corpse were thrash legends that gained their popularity through live shows on the Texas circuit and their demos getting sent all over the world. For some strange reason, the band never got signed by a label. It was the underground ideal of not selling out that kept the band from signing but it also could have been the band’s name. Back in ’85, Rotting Corpse was a shocking and controversial name, one that even some of it’s own members didn’t want! It seems funny today with names like Cannibal Corpse, Vomitory, and Rotting Christ out there but something as simple as the right band name was a huge selling point for the corporate world. Getting signed wasn’t the priority for Rotting Corpse…..going out and giving the music (and lifestyle) 150% was all that mattered. These guys did it for the love of Metal, not for money or success. Well, at least some of the band wanted to be signed.

The DVD is an excellent documentary of the band from it’s beginning in 1985 right up until filming in 2005. Interviews with current and former band members trace the band’s history and give us an inside look about what it was like being a part of the underground scene that so many people still care about today. Additional interviews with Jason McMaster (Watchtower/Broken Teeth), Wes Weaver (Metal DJ), and Scott Fulwiler (Texas Metal Underground) help tell the story of Rotting Corpse’s place in Metal history. The interviews are central to the film but there is also home video footage of the band behind the scenes and on stage from all eras right up to a 2005 performance. Production and sound is solid and the archive footage is key to bring the interviews to life.

There are so many interesting and funny stories on this DVD that I couldn’t possibly mention them all. One of my favorite parts is when founding guitarist Walt Trachsler is talking about his leopard guitar that he used to destroy onstage. Walt is going through the story of how the guys in Pantera pooled their money and bought him the guitar and how they got pissed when he would smash it against the stage at the end of the show. Walt goes on to tell how he would re-build the guitar and do it all over again. Next clip is in Walt’s shed where he has bits and pieces of the guitar! Another funny story is about a show where singer Jim “Moe” Mulqueen lost his high-top sneaker in a mosh pit. He gets back to the stage and announces to the crowd that he needs his sneaker. The fans decide to play “keep away” with the high-top so Moe decides he’s not performing until he gets it back! Priceless!

Bottom Line:
I love watching documentaries on bands, especially ones that were central to the underground Metal scene but never made it to the stadium and platinum level. This DVD encapsulates the do-it-yourself attitude of the underground, the hijinx behind the scenes, and the raw power of the performances that Rotting Corpse provides to this day. This is a really good time capsule on the band that anyone into the ’80s Metal underground should check out.

(This DVD can be bought through the Texas Metal Undergound website, see the link above.)