Judas Priest Was Hungry and Aggressive on ‘Sin After Sin’ | Album Review

Who’s in the mood for some Judas Priest? Today, I’ll be reviewing the band’s third studio album titled, Sin After Sin (1977). Produced by Deep Purple bassist Roger Glover, it is the last album to feature the former gothic font for the Judas Priest logo. The line-up that played on the album includes Rob Halford on lead vocals, K.K. Downing on guitars, Glenn Tipton on guitars, Ian Hill on bass, and Simon Phillips on drums and percussion for tracks 1-8.

The reason why I say tracks 1-8 is because I have a remastered version of Sin After Sin that contains two bonus tracks, which are not even from that era of the band. For track 9, Les Binks did the drum parts since the track was recorded during the following album, Stained Class (1978), sessions. For track 10, Dave Holland did the drum parts because the track is a live version of a song from Defenders of the Faith (1984). With all that said, let’s get on with the music!

“Sinner” is first and what a banger way to start the album! I love the siren-like guitar playing during the verses and it’s awesome whenever Halford goes into his higher register (“Can’t you hear their souls calling out in their PLIGHT”). The song is a bit long with the guitar solos and instrumentals, but I can vibe with it. “Diamonds and Rust,” a cover of Joan Baez’s song, is up next and it’s ok. I like the steady beat of the drums, but it doesn’t scream wow and aggressive. “But we both know what memories can bring / They bring Diamonds and Rust / Yes we both know what memories can bring / They bring Diamonds and Rust.” 

The band returns to their aggressive and hardcore self with “Starbreaker.” The guitar solo was amazing and the drummer was on fire; he was in the groove and knew how to work a hi-hat. I also think the fake fade out before the bridge was a nice touch. “Last Rose of Summer” is my favorite song from the album because I love the melody and beautiful lyrics. Ian Hill added some flavor with his bass, which I enjoyed. But, I’d also like to point out Halford’s vocals because some of the notes he sings are unusual, yet they work. For example, in the line, “This rose reminds you of a time…”, I didn’t expect him to go higher when he sang “rose,” I thought he was going to sing it in a mid-range key.

“Let Us Prey/Call for the Priest” is up next, which starts off with an organ, played by Tipton. I think it makes the track more haunting, in a way. But the organ didn’t last long and at around the 1:20 mark, the rest of the band came in and chaos ensued. I love the lyrics because I find them rebellious. “Well I know what I want and I know where to get it / And I’m going there right away / This is one priest that I don’t have to fall on / Down to my knees and pray.” 

Next up is “Raw Deal,” which has a headbanging feel to it. Lyrically, the song speaks about Fire Island, a popular gay getaway in New York, according to the Rolling Stone. It was like a coming out experience for Halford, but not many fans picked up on it until after he came out in 1998, the article continues. I don’t think “Here Come the Tears” is all that interesting. I don’t hate it entirely because I love the emotive guitar solo, but there aren’t many lyrics and Halford was singing so slow. Then, he tried to be like Bruce Dickinson and go operatic, but he failed and sounded off: “Ohhh…. I want to be loved… / I need to be loved… / Won’t somebody love me….” 

“Here Come the Tears” transitions nicely into “Dissident Aggressor.” I don’t know how to describe the opening riff, but it sounds like people are marching and preparing for a battle, then Halford does his famous high-pitched scream. The band sounds loud and mean, everything from the guitars, drums, vocals, and bass. “Stab! Bawl! Punch! Crawl!” I mean, that sounds so bada**, right?

Next up, we have the bonus tracks. “Race with the Devil,” a cover of a song by The Gun, was recorded during the Stained Class sessions (as mentioned before). I think the main riff is so annoying that I can’t even listen to this track; I don’t like skipping songs on my albums though. The last track on the album is a live version of “Jawbreaker” taken from May 5, 1984 at Long Beach Arena (at least that’s what it says on Wikipedia). It’s not a bad track and the band sounds great live, but like “Race with the Devil” it’s not from the Sin After Sin era. Here’s a tip for remastered CDs, make sure the bonus tracks are taken from the corresponding era of the band!

So, I enjoyed 8 out of the 10 tracks (“Diamonds and Rust” and “Here Come the Tears” got half points), which is about 80 percent. With that in mind, I’ll give Sin After Sin a rating of 4 out of 5 stars. 


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Take care and see ya real soon!

Lana

92 thoughts on “Judas Priest Was Hungry and Aggressive on ‘Sin After Sin’ | Album Review

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  1. Great review Lana! I am glad you at least gave Diamonds and Rust a passing grade even though we know you hate covers. It is really a great cover. Pretty much agree on that score as this is a great album and one I found that I liked a lot. More so then I expected.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much, John! I’ll be honest, if it was the acoustic cover of “Diamonds and Rust,” I would’ve gave it a full point (versus half a point). I think it sounds more powerful done acoustically. Yeah, out of the four Priest albums I own so far, ‘Sin After Sin’ is my favorite. Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I wanted to buy tickets to see Priest in Vegas (it’s the easiest location for me to attend) so badly. When they rescheduled their dates, I had no idea when the new Vegas date would be. Unfortunately, the Vegas date is a day before I start my Disney College Program in March, so I can’t go obviously. I’m praying they go on tour again (after next year’s tour) when they release a new studio album. If you do get to see Priest on tour, lucky!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. By the way, do you know how to bring CDs on a plane? I’ve been asking around on a Disney College Program facebook group and someone said that I’ll have time to listen to music on the program. So I want to bring some CDs with me (maybe), but I’m not sure how to fly them safely with me. I’m not even sure how I’m going to pack the CD player in my suitcase. If there’s a way to bring the stuff safely, then I’ll bring my CDs, but if not, I’ll just leave my babies at home. Better to be safe than sorry!

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      2. Depends how many you want to bring. Carry-on, or suitcase, yeah. But you;re young, new tech generation. I say rip all of your CDs to MP3 (high quality, 320 minimum) and load ’em all into a portable MP3 player (iPod, whatever). Back them all up to a few DVD-r or an external hard drive or thumb drives, whatever, and just listen to ’em that way. Far less to carry, and you’ll probably have your laptop with you anyway.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. If I rip my CDs to an MP3, I might as well listen to them on Spotify instead, which I’m trying not to use as much. But I was thinking just listen to them on Spotify so that I don’t risk cracking my CDs on the plane to Florida and coming home. Have you flown with CDs before?

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      4. Even if the CD player fits in my carry on, it would still be a risk packing some of my CDs and taking them with me to Florida. I’d have to wrap them up good, I guess

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      5. Yeah four months would count as short term. I heard that you could extend your program if you wanted to, depending on your role. But it’s too early for me to decide if I want to since I haven’t started yet and I feel like the longer I stay, my perspective on the program may change.

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      6. I think it depends on what time you go to the post office and how many people there are in front of you. I haven’t been to the post office a whole lot, so I’m entirely sure how it works. Haha, not really an expedition. It’s just that I’m going to be super busy working. I’ve been watching Disney College Program vlogs and depending on how busy the parks are, program participants only get one to two days off per week. Majority of participants use that time to rest or go to the parks.

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      7. My goal is to not spend a lot of money on food and merchandise in the parks. I just think it’s a waste to spend all your money on food, when you could be spending that time riding attractions.

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      8. Oh actually, now that I think about it, cast members (Disney workers) get a discount on merchandise, so I’ll take advantage of that for sure. I just can’t buy anymore stuffed animals since I literally have no more room on my bed and shelf.

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      9. Like I should talk though, my shelf is filled with so many stuffed animals that my mom is worried it’s going to break, Plus I have a couple of bins with more stuffed animals as well, lol.

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      10. None. Her hands are still a bit small, even on the smaller frets of the ¾ size guitar. I have shown her some chords but she doesn’t really remember them yet. She just likes to make lots of noise with it. It’s all to the good. Our son got an electric guitar this year for Christmas, so now they can jam together whenever they want. It’s a racket only parent could love (and I do)!

        Liked by 1 person

      11. Well, guitar takes a lot of practice, so maybe her hands will adjust to the guitar and she’ll be able to play some stuff eventually. Your son got a guitar too? Did he get a stratocaster as well?

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      12. Yup, she’s small for her age but growing quickly. Won’t take long. He got an Epiphone, closest to a Les paul but entry level. Great starter guitar. He already had an acoustic so knows some chords. He’s having fun with the distortion.

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      13. Well, they got guitars we could afford. Plus hers is pink and she likes pink. I suppose if I thought of it, it’s cool hers is single coils and his is humbuckers, but it really was just a plan to get them affordably started. They have the same wee amps, though.

        He got his acoustic a couple of years ago.

        Liked by 1 person

      14. Ah ok, it was based on price. That makes sense! My cousin is learning how to play guitar and she got one for a great deal cause her dad knows a guy that owns a guitar shop. If they didn’t get a good price, I’m guessing they wouldn’t have bought that specific one for her cause it was a really nice guitar. I just don’t know what kind it was.

        So your son got into guitar before your daughter did then?

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      15. Yup, for a first guitar when it might not be what they stick with, no sense buying fancy. Although, if they got fancy guitars and didn’t want them, Dad would rescue them lol. But this way they could get other stuff too.

        Yeah, my boy got into it a couple of years ago. They take an interest because I do. Will see how it goes.

        Liked by 1 person

      16. Good call! If they don’t stick with guitar, a cheap option is the way to go. I’m sure you would rescue those fancy guitars, lol.

        Ah taking after his father, that’s so sweet. Has he learned any songs yet? I’m wondering if you told me this already, if you did, I’m sorry for asking you again.

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      17. They’d be better to take after their beautiful mother! Yeah he knows some of the main chords, so he can unlock a million tunes with them (it’s all the same stuff lol). The big thing now is the strumming hand, getting the rhythms down. He can sort of play Green Day’s Good Riddance and a couple of others. Mostly he just works on his changes between the chords, good practice.

        Liked by 1 person

      18. Hey, it wouldn’t be a bad thing if your kids took after you in some ways, just like they could take after their mom in some ways. Ah yes, changing between chords is a very frustrating learning process.

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      19. OMG I almost deleted this comment! That was a close one. I’m sorry my responses are mostly a day apart. I’m usually on YouTube in the day and WordPress in the late afternoon/night time. That’s cause I try to listen to music when I’m on WordPress and I like to listen to the music in the evening. But then I have to cram a bunch of music at night, which is so frustrating ahhhh!!!!

        Sorry for that. Ah legos, books, and Barbies. My second cousin loves lego and I used to play Barbies with my sister, good old times. You’re lucky your kids like books, that’s a good habit to have.

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      20. I’ve read to both kids since they were baby bumps. They love books. My boy is quite the master builder with Lego, he pictures something in his mind and then works it out and builds it, no instructions. And yeah, my girl makes whole worlds with Barbies.

        Liked by 1 person

      21. Yeah, it’s good that your kids like books because it keeps their brains sharp. I tried playing Legos with my second cousin and there are so many pieces that it’s not easy building stuff, even with the instructions. That’s impressive of your son to be skilled with Legos.

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      22. Yup they love books, which is why my lovely wife and I are holding on for dear life while they take over the world lol. As for Legos, yeah, he has a spatial sense and a problem solving ability beyond my ken. It’s amazing to watch. Just yesterday he free-built a working sliding door from Star Wars. Just because, apparently.

        Liked by 1 person

      23. I tried getting into reading in high school, but I got bored sometime around early to mid-college. I’m not a reading person, but I want to get back into it since it’s a good habit to have. Plus, it’s another activity to keep me away from youtube.

        I wonder how your son got that special problem solving ability then! Your son just build a Lego sliding door from Star Wars for fun? That’s cool! Is he a fast builder?

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      24. Have you tried audio books? Maybe being read to is the answer. My lovely wife listens to books during her commute, otherwise she’d never have time to read.

        My boy’s talent for thinking things through is mostly his own, I think. He’s just always been like that, can see things then make them happen. It’s awesome to watch. Some stuff he builds quickly, other times it’s a longer project. The door, from idea to current iteration was maybe a day’s worth of off and on work. He’ll be upgrading it several times in the next week too, I’m sure. He and his sister even made a minute long stop motion video with figures and the door yesterday. Brilliant stuff.

        Liked by 1 person

      25. I’ve never tried audio books actually. To be honest, I had a hearing scare this past Thursday after 4pm where I had this loud ringing in my ear. That was like a wake up call for me to stop blasting my music so loud in the bathroom and in the shower. But also, it was a wake up call for me to find other hobbies for me to do that don’t require me listening to anything or watching videos. I still have a slight high-pitched ringing, but only when I talk. I’m still going to listen to music, just not as loud.

        Wow, you must be so proud to have a son whose such a talented builder! Even though I’m sure you’re proud of him anyways.

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      26. That is scary! Of all the senses, hearing is the one I’d hate to lose the most. It’s why I always wear ear plugs at concerts, etc.

        Oh yes, always very encouragingly proud of both kids. They’re amazing. He says he wants to go live in Europe and work for Lego. He’d love that.

        Liked by 1 person

      27. Yeah, I was so worried I was going deaf! Luckily, I noticed today that the ringing went away, so that’s a good sign. But I’m definitely going to be more careful about the volume I watch my youtube videos and listen to music. Yep, the next concert I attend, I’m bringing ear plugs.

        Why Europe though? Is Lego based in Europe?

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  2. Nice review.
    I like every song except Raw Deal. I always skipped that one.

    It shows the potential of what’s to come
    but it’s still rooted in there blues rock. Hell “Last Rose Of Summer” could have come from a Bad Company album.

    You should listen to Joan Baez’s original folk version of Diamond and Rust. It’s probably why I appreciate the version that JP did.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh you don’t like “Raw Deal”? That’s interesting to know.

      I can kind of hear the blues rock in “Last Rose of Summer,” now that I think about it. Maybe that’s why I’ve always loved that track.

      Oh the original version is beautiful. It definitely works better as an acoustic track!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The music needs to connect and Raw Deal just didn’t have the riffs in it to connect with me. I had no idea about lyrical message and then again I never really payed too much attention to the lyrics early on.

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh I haven’t heard the original yet, but I say a video where Judas Priest performed the song acoustically. I don’t know how old that version is, but if you search up Judas Priest “Diamonds and Rust” acoustic, you’ll find it!

        Liked by 1 person

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