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Priest still rocks hard

The crowd was Hell Bent For Leather as heavy metal icons Judas Priest rocked Kelowna's Prospera Place on Sunday night.

Lead singer Rob Halford proved he's still got the pipes at 67 years of age with his trademark howls, even though he reportedly recently got over a bout of bronchitis.

He and bassist Ian Hill with his signature chugga-chugga rhythms were the only two original members on stage, but didn't let up, with ample support from younger players Richie Faulkner and Andy Sneap on guitars, and Scott Travis on drums replicating the classic Priest sound.

Original guitarist Glenn Tipton is still a band member and collaborates on songwriting, but no longer tours due his ongoing battle with Parkinson's disease. Tipton was given a nod with a video montage during the 1976 rocker Victim of Changes, off the Sad Wings of Destiny album.

But, far from a golden oldies show, this tour is in support of Priest's recent new album, Firepower. 

The set list mixed old and new, with the recent material blending in well with classics going back into the band's early days.

The show opened with new track Necromancer, followed by 1980s classic Heading Out to the Highway before morphing through the band's catalogue, all the way back to 1977's Starbreaker, sprinkled with new nuggets including Traitor's Gate and No Surrender.

The mostly full arena roared with approval when the encore began with Halford's classic move of crossing the stage on a Harley-Davison for Hell Bent For Leather, winding up with '80s crowd pleasers Breaking the Law, and Living After Midnight.

The crowd chanted for a second encore, with many waiting for the early '80s anthem You've Got Another Thing Comin' – but the band made their bows and Halford acknowledged the applause as the night was over.

Fellow Brit rockers Uriah Heep opened the show.



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