Redeemer of Souls
★★ (out of 5 stars)
Talk around the water cooler posits Redeemer of Souls as a farewell album from these venerable British metallers. If so, the Priest is going out on a solid, if not entirely remarkable, note. They’re still lean and relatively mean, but a “going through the motions” feel permeates much of Redeemer. That could be due to how rote the genre of heavy metal and its bullet points have become since Judas P started soldiering (“March of the Damned” would crush if not burdened with such a generic title). It could be simply that the well is moist at best (note: founding guitarist K.K. Downing exited the band just before this album). Still, Judas Priest on medium energy is more satisfying than most other bands at full blast, and Rob Halford’s vocal fortitude refuses to waver in the face of anything. There have been worse send-offs. Two devil horns up.