Judas Priest
Sad Wings of Destiny


4.0
excellent

Review

by Priestmetal USER (20 Reviews)
August 4th, 2005 | 176 replies


Release Date: 1976 | Tracklist


Judas Priest were the leaders of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal along with Iron Maiden. Yet, this was in the early 1980s. What most people don't realize is that Judas Priest were around way before all this. They formed in 1969 and released their debut album Rocka Rolla on Gull records in 1974. Their debut, although possessing visible potential, was basically a flop, as many songs were not well organized; they kind of threw riffs around randomly. Next came Sad Wings of Destiny in 1976. Priest cleaned up their act and wrote some very impressive material. Well organized, well written, heavy, melodic, catchy, and even experimental at times. Their first album sounded like a dark but thin and insipid Led Zeppelin mixed with some more straight out blues. This album however, was Judas Priest. No band at the time sounded quite like them. Not even Black Sabbath. Although Black Sabbath had basically invented heavy metal, Priest brought it to a whole new level. Their heavy riffs were simpler than Sabbath's, and K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton's dual lead work was way ahead of its time unlike Tommy Iommie's bluesy solos. With this album, (and their follow up to this one Sin after Sin) Judas Priest invented the generic metal riff. Another thing about Judas Priest's releases before 1979 was that they were much darker sounding than their more mainstream releases. In addition, the lyrics were much better. This album showcases a side of Judas Priest that not many people who are not Priest fans know about.

The band:

Rob Halford: Vocals
Glenn Tipton: Lead Guitars
K.K. Downing: Lead Guitars and Piano
Ian Hill: Bass
I am terribly sorry but I do not know who their drummer was at this point of their career. If anybody happens to know please tell me.

The tracks:

1) Victim of Changes: Starts off with a guitar harmony crescendo by both guitarists then leads into a mind-blowing riff. After a few repeats every one stops and Rob Halford sings " Whiskey woman don't you know that you are driving me INSANE!!! OHH" once he's done the main riff kicks back in. This song is basically awesome riffs galore. After the chorus, there is another impressively good riff that leads back into the verse. After the second chorus, there is a bridge section that leads into the first solo. Its a fairly decent solo but nothing special. Then, there is a softer section and Rob begins to sing again. This softer section masterfully (yes, masterfully is an appropriate word for this description) leads back into a heavy riff and Rob screams " VICTIM OF CHANGES". Barely is he done with his scream, Glenn Tipton delivers a nice solo that fits the song much better then the one K.K does before. The song finishes with Rob Screaming "NO" a few times and then ends on a power chord. Not only an amazing opener, not only the best track on the album, not only the best metal song of the decade, but one of the greatest metal songs of all time! 5/5.

2) The Ripper: Again, K.K and Glenn begin with a guitar harmony but a louder and shorter one than the one in Victim of Changes. Rob starts to sing immediately after. The lyrics are about Jack the Ripper as one might have guessed. The verse consists merely of palm muted power chords and the chorus is similar. This is a more vocal oriented song. There is a solo but it is very short and nothing special. However after it is finished there is an pretty good build up that leads back into the verse. The song ends on a scream from Mr. Halford. A decent song but nothing too exiting. 3.5/5

3) Dreamer Deceiver: A soft song that begins with a guitar chord being played note by note. Rob then begins singing very melodically. This song shows that Rob Halford can hit very high notes by actually singing and not screaming. In addition, it shows that he can sing quite low as well. The song pretty much stays on the same level until the end when Rob starts singing in a more metal way and a beautiful solo begins. The song ends with Rob hitting some more high notes and then a quick and unexpected piano fill leads right into the next song. Simply a beautiful, melancholy song. Among the best on the album and probably very overlooked. 5/5.

4) Deceiver: Heavy guitar intro leads into the follow up to Dreamer Deceiver. Basically the dreamer led the narrator into a nightmare and thus deceived him. (Thatís my interpretation and it might be totally wrong). The whole song is basically various palm muted classic Priest riffs. Great vocals by Rob to finish the song. Then, once u think its done, thereís an acoustic outro that sounds great and really goes well with the song. A very good song but not quite as good as Dreamer Deceiver. 4/5.

5) Prelude: This song is instrumental and is basically K.K. Downing playing piano (not keyboard). It has a noble and epic feel but only lasts about a minute and thirty seconds. Not a needed track. 2.5/5

6) Tyrant: Starts with a very catchy guitar intro that is moderately fast. Then the drums and bass kick in. As soon as Rob starts singing the riff becomes the usual Priest palm mute riff. For the chorus, they recorded Robís vocals twice so he can kinda overlap his first vocal part (if that makes any sense). They do the same for the strangely melodic bridge section with one of Robís voices singing and octave higher than the other. The solo that comes after is quite good although I think that at times it strays from the general feel of the song. The song ends with another insane scream. Kick ass song. A nice head banger but with lots of melody. 4.5/5.

7) Genocide: The opening guitar intro (and the rest of this song) almost brings us back to the kind of riffs Priest was creating for Rocka Rolla. Itís much more of a rock song than a metal song. Although the lyrics are not bad per say, they are a bit vague. There are a few good riffs here and there though, like the one for the chorus and all those ones before and after the solo. Nothing too special here. 3/5.

8) Epitaph: Now hereís something special! This song is very experimental. The whole song consists of Rob singing and K.K. Downing playing piano. Itís a piano and vocal duet from a heavy metal band. Thatís not something you see every day (although it has been done again by a few other bands). Now the question ďIs the song good"? Yes. It is pretty far from metal or anything Judas Priest has ever done but it is a very soothing song to hear. The song is about an old man who dies and who is forgotten by everyone except the nature surrounding his tomb who ďShouts his epitaph out loud for anyone whoís passing near". Of course Rob shows off his impressive choir like singing. The opening palm muted intro riff of the next song starts immediately at the end of this one. An experiment by Priest that is quite a success in my eyes. 4/5.

9) Island of Domination: Epitaph leads right into the closing track. This song is filled with great vocals (as usual) from Rob and very good riffs all around. I think this song is about the brutality involved in slavery in the colonizing days of Brittan. (Yes, Iím probably wrong). After the second chorus there is a very heavy Sabbath type riff, a slower chunky power chord riff. After a final chorus the song ends and so does one of the greatest metal albums of the 70ís. Very appropriate and solid album closer. 4.5/5.


Bottom line:

For Judas Priest, it was a long way to the top for them to rock n roll. Their first album, Rocka Rolla failed, their second, Sad Wings of Destiny, although was accepted as a strong album that showed the potential of the band, was not hugely success until Priest went more mainstream, their third, Sin after Sin, (which I will review some time) was again acknowledged as good but was in a way overlooked and still is to this day. Next came Stained Class, which brought them a little bit of success in 1978. It was not until 1979, with the release of Killing Machine, (Hell Bent for Leather, in the US) ten years after their band had started, that they began to get some mainstream recognition. Of course, as soon as that happened they became one of the biggest metal bands of all time, the leaders of a musical movement and so on and so forth.

Sad Wings of Destiny is probably their best album (Stained Class is a close tie) before they got super famous. As I mentioned before, as soon as they attained that level of fame, their sound changed drastically. They went from a dark, mysterious, and almost morbid band to a bright and showy band that brought motorcycles on stage and made studded leather really popular among metal heads. This is in no way bad, but itís just a huge step away from what they were doing before 1979. Now back to 1976. This album is great and has some very unique and heavy riffs (not anymore but they were at the time). In addition, Robís trademark high-pitched vocals really add power to the band as a whole. Notice I have not said ONE WORD about their rhythm section. It does exactly what it needs to do. Nothing more, nothing less. Its not outstanding or anything. This will change on their next album but thatís a different story.

Definitely download or somehow listen to: Victim of Changes, Dreamer Deceiver/ Deceiver, Tyrant

Final rating: 4/5. Definitely recommended to anyone who likes metal even if they donít like Judas Priestís more mainstream songs.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
masada
August 4th 2005


2733 Comments


Nice review, though I have never liked Judas Priest.

Priestmetal
August 4th 2005


542 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Even though you have mentioned several times that you do not like Judas Priest I think you should check out the song Victim of Changes if you havnt already. Its a REALLY amazing song. But you need to listen to it all the way through.

the low end theorist
August 4th 2005


7 Comments


i like this album quite a bit- it seems tome ian hill's work on this album is a little busier than other priest stuff( i'm a bassist, btw) so, i'm a little more fond of this album. overall, nice review-i think you did an exceptional job. vitim of changes is a great song, but tyrant is probably my favorite-it's just so damn catchy.

Priestmetal
August 4th 2005


542 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Props for being a bassist. I am one too. Priest, although being my favorite band, has very boring bass lines. Its a shame.

the low end theorist
August 5th 2005


7 Comments


unfortunately true about priest's bass lines-that's why i prefer maiden over priest, but i do enjoy the bass playing on this album-it's just a lot different than the priest most people are familiar with (british steel, screaming for vengeance, defenders of the faith, etc.) oh yeah-props to you as well

sunsinger
August 12th 2005


16 Comments


Great review. This will have to be my next Priest album.

Jaffe
February 1st 2006


9 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Great review! You're totally right when it comes to the fact that not many people knows about this other style of Judas Priest. Including myself, before I got this album. I was kinda bored of newer albums such as British Steel, Screaming for Vengeance and Killing Machine. Expect for Painkiller. That's when I got a hint from a guy at my school that this album definately was worth a try. It shocked me! :D

It was awesome, from beginning to end. Maybe except for Epitaph, but whatever. It isn't the badest.

I strongly recommend this classic album to all Priest fans, and other Metal-fans! It definately shows another side of Judas Priest. A good one.


spoon_of_grimbo
February 1st 2006


2241 Comments


only heard "victim of changes" but on the strength of that alone, this album should be pretty spectacular. cant beat a bit of priest!!!

nice review too!

Priestmetal
February 2nd 2006


542 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yes indeed this is a great album. Spoon of Grimbo you should hear the live version of Victim of Changes. It is mind blowing!!!

Jaffe
February 3rd 2006


9 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I wonder why Priest didn't make any more songs like Dreamer Deceiver. They sure knows the trick of slower more "thoughtful" (is this a correct expression? I'm norwegian, heh...) songs. I mean, it's a stunning track. It's brilliant in all ways and make me start thinking of all sorts of stuff when I listen to it. Halford does a brilliant job in it, especially later into the song when he sings very high.

And, why didn't Ian Hill continue that great bass-playing we hear on this album? Later there's a VERY boring bass. Yes, like someone said, it's a shame. This Message Edited On 02.03.06

blekzebbed
January 3rd 2007


65 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Jaffe, I agree with you! But they did more songs like D D, although this one is probably the best. Priestmetal-> Isn't the drummer Alan 'Skip' Moore? Nice review, and great album

Charlie Manson
January 3rd 2007


15 Comments


I'm rather dissapointed you don't know who theur drummer is :-|

goneshootin22
July 25th 2007


142 Comments


Im listining to Victims of Changes for the first time right now. So far I really like it. Im not sure to get this or Stained Glass first.

jrowa001
July 25th 2007


8750 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

the Ripper should be rated higher. love that song

DethThrasher
October 27th 2008


462 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Dreamer Deceiver is my new favorite off this

KILL
February 20th 2011


71793 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

lol agreed

Digging: Invisible - El jardin de los presentes

KILL
February 20th 2011


71793 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

dreamer deceiver is one of the best songs ever tho

BigHans
March 29th 2011


26454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Victim of Changes has like the most badass riff ever, especially when heard live.

KILL
March 29th 2011


71793 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

dreamer deceiver is the best metal ballad ever

BigHans
March 29th 2011


26454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Nah man Sanitarium



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