Judas Priest brings the final night of their Firepower Tour to Las Vegas with support from Uriah Heep and closes out the tour with a bang.
The sold-out crowd is in for a treat tonight as two long standing members of the British heavy metal scene are set to play The Joint in Las Vegas. The VIP fans have been in line since noon to be on the front railing and the regular line runs through the casino for hours before the show starts. At 7:00 PM the doors open and the fans flood in. The floor fills up fast and the balcony seats begin to fill as well. At 8:00 PM the lights go dark and Uriah Heep take the stage. Frontman Bernie Shaw commands the stage from the beginning. They open with “Grazed by Heaven,” “Too Scared to Run,” and “Take Away My Soul.” Shaw makes mention that tonight there is over 100 years of British heavy metal experience hitting the stage which is true. Along with him, the two other longtime Uriah Heep members are guitarist Mick Box and keyboardist Phil Lanzon. These three along with the members of Judas Priest have a lengthy pedigree. Their nine-song set continues and does an excellent job getting the crowd ready for Judas Priest as well as introducing some newcomers to their music.At 9:30 PM the intro music begins to play. The first sighting of the band is a silhouette of Rob Halford behind a screen before the band takes the stage followed by Halford who prowls slowly to the center of the stage dressed complete with a cape, feathered hat, and jeweled skull scepter. The music is always first for the fans but with this band, the stage show is a close second. They pay attention to every detail from the costumes to the lighting. Halford is the star but guitarists Richie Faulkner and Andy Sneap are not to be overlooked. Clad in studded black leather they deliver a highly visual performance with poses and snarls and interact with the fans throughout. Bassist Ian Hill is in the back, right in front of drummer Scott Travis. Each member is highlighted in their own way. Halford prowls the stage and delivers an impeccable vocal that showcases the fact that his signature singing ability has not decreased in the least and the rest of the band plays perfectly and interact with each other at various points.
They open with “Necromancer,” “Heading Out to the Highway” and “The Sentinel.” The crowd is singing along and throwing their horns into the air. The set continues with costume changes by Halford each a little different than the next and he still rides his signature motorcycle onto the stage which is a crowd favorite. They play sixteen songs including “Judas Rising,” “Out in the Cold,” “Halls of Valhalla,” “No Surrender,” and “All Guns Blazing” before heading into the encore. There are three songs in the encore, all of which are some of their most-loved and well-known songs from this band. They begin with “Hell Bent for Leather” before moving into “Breaking the Law” and “Living After Midnight.” The set covers the most popular songs as well as the new Firepower album. It is hard with a band that has eighteen albums going back to 1974 to play everything everyone wants to hear, but this set did a good job doing just that.
Over 100 years of British heavy metal experience was what was promised to the crowd tonight and that is just what they got. These bands both show no signs of slowing down and this crowd will definitely be there for their next show.JUDAS PRIEST
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