|Long in the works, Nostradamus takes epic storytelling to a whole new level, as it recounts the life of this mysterious, world-known 16th Century French prophet. Some of the events that Nostradamus experts have interpreted as his predictions include the great fire of London in 1666, the rise of Adolf Hitler, and most recently, 9-11, among countless other renowned events.|
"As in any concept piece, the lifeline needs to be of a solid source, taking the music over many levels of interest and perception," points out singer Rob Halford. "Nostradamus contains new frontiers explored and defined. The sense of adventure and the journey we undertook bringing the man's life alive with metal was a real labour of love."
Housed in a 48 page hardbound book package!
Disc 1 Track Listing
Disc 2 Track Listing
Album Notes and Credits
Notes & Personnel Info
|Personnel: Rob Halford (vocals); Glenn Tipton, K.K. Downing (guitar, guitar synthesizer); Ian Hill (bass guitar); Scott Travis (drums).|
|Audio Mixers: Glenn Tipton; K.K. Downing; Atti Bauw.|
|Recording information: The Old Smithy Studio, England.|
|Arrangers: Glenn Tipton; K.K. Downing; Rob Halford.|
|On 2005's (almost) divine comeback album Angel of Retribution, Judas Priest fans got a modern day update of the band's genre-bending 1976 classic, Sad Wings of Destiny. The New Wave of British Heavy Metal legends return to the mines for 2008's Nostradamus, though this time it's another band's treasure they're looting, specifically Iron Maiden's 1988 concept album, Seventh Son of a Seventh Son. Heavy metal's obsession with seers, sorcery, and anything else that falls under the nebulous blanket of the "dark arts" is legendary, and Maiden's loosely knit tale of a visionary "chosen one" provided listeners with one of the last great albums of the pre-grunge, epic metal era, due in part to some truly memorable songs that remain fan favorites even to this day. Nostradamus, on the other hand, manages to live up to nearly every Spinal Tap clich? (non-deliberate, laugh-inducing cover art; melodramatic spoken word interludes; rhyming "fire" with desire). At nearly two hours long, one expects a certain amount of filler, but the dated keyboard strings, soft piano, and bluesy, minor-key guitar licks that populate every nook and cranny in between (and often throughout) each track sound like discarded incidental music from The X-Files or an RPG video game "cut scene." The songs themselves are hit or miss, with the emphasis falling on the latter, due mostly to an over-reliance on three-chord, midtempo filler, but as is the case with nearly every Priest offering, when they're on they're dead on. Disc one closer "Persecution," after a lengthy organ/guitar intro, unleashes Nostradamus' finest six minutes, boasting one of the best choruses the band has produced since 1988's "Hard as Iron" (few things sound as natural and satisfying as Rob Halford's metallic voice running through a phaser, and his signature scream, when it arises, still has no equal). The predictable but effectively apocalyptic "War" (taking a cue from Holst's Mars, Bringer of War) spawns one of the few great orchestral breakdowns on the record, while both "Death" and the nearly seven-minute title track feature stunning guitar work from Glenn Tipton and K.K. Downing. None of this, however, can save Nostradamus from the fact that even if it were reduced to a single album (it should have been), its flaws would far outweigh its triumphs. Excess and metal go together like blood and guts, but even gore loses its ability to draw a reaction after the umpteenth beheading. [This Deluxe Edition included an insert with a code to receive a general-admission ticket ("while supplies last") to a Judas Priest concert during summer 2008.] ~ James Christopher Monger|
Producer: Glenn Tipton; K.K. Downing
Engineer: Richard W.G. Wood
|Release Date : 06/17/2008|
|Original Release Date : 2008|
|Catalog ID : 8869731551|
|Label : Epic (USA)|
|Number of Discs : 2|
|Studio/Live : Studio|
|Mono/Stereo : Stereo|
|SPAR Code : n/a|
|UPC : 00886973155127|
- "[T]he entire work drags you in with its own irresistible gravity. Striking hooks and stirring pieces of instrumentation make themselves apparent from within the stately march of their surrounds..."
- 3 stars out of 5 -- "[G]loriously over-the-top..."
- 4 stars out of 5 -- "NOSTRADAMUS is dark, mystical, complex and occasionally acoustic, and the Priest write around Halford's aging voice well, emphasizing power over range."
Since 1974, Judas Priest has been one of heavy metal's most successful bands, issuing such all-time classic albums as 1980's British Steel, 1982's Screaming for Vengeance, and 1990's Painkiller, and such arena-rocking anthems as "Breaking the Law," "Living After Midnight," and "You've Got Another Thing Comin'." However, Priest's influence goes far beyond their music - they were the first metal band to embrace the 'leather biker look,' a fashion that has since become synonymous with the musical genre. Additionally, Halford's powerful four-and-a-half octave vocal range and the twin guitar harmonies of Downing and Tipton have been 'studied' by countless metal bands in Priest's wake.
"The Nostradamus album - above all others - is perhaps the one I'm most proud of," says Tipton. "Whilst in essence and character still very much Judas Priest, it has afforded the opportunity to explore areas of classical and operatic dimensions that the band normally wouldn't. As a guitarist and writer it has inspired me to greater heights and opened new doors to intrigue and passion. From start to finish, it will take you through a magical experience filled with light, shade, drama, melody and emotion that reflects this unique man and his life."
"For me, Nostradamus has been a musical journey without comparison," adds Downing. "The intrigue and mystery that surrounds this revered man has expanded my perception of heavy metal to the highest plateau and enabled me to reach the outer limits of my imagination and transport unique feelings and emotions to the instrument that allows me to express myself."