Halford/Live Insurrection

Released in 2001, this live double disc set encompasses songs from the first Halford release ‘Resurrection‘, Fight and Judas Priest as well as a few new songs and a Heavy Metal duet with Iron Maiden vocalist Bruce Dickinson. Released just before the second Halford release Crucible and a short time before his resumption of vocal duties with Judas Priest, this is an electric set that is full of live energy and an amazing set of vocals.

Disc 1:

Resurrection—-Featuring the best vocal display of Halford’s since Painkiller, this song is heavy. aggressive and threatens to destroy the vocal chords of any other vocalist in the industry. The energy of the crowd grows and grows and when the guitars kick in, your head is likely to blow off. The performance is tight and the vocal is better than any I have ever heard from Rob. This is pure, brutal and a song that Priest was incapable of duplicating. Remarkable.

Made In Hell—-You notice at once that the twin guitar attack has an uncanny resemblance to the Priest machine. The vocal come forth and Halford sings in a mid range that is so pleasant and acceptable, you almost wonder if this is the same guy singing. The screams come forth later, but before that you notice the remarkable tightness of the band and how well this set seems to be rehearsed and delivered. this is classic Metal that no one was making in 2000. Fantastic…and kudos Rob!!!

Into The Pit—-Delving into the Fight catalog, this band delivers the song with an even bigger blister than the original. This is aggressive and finds Halford truly exploring the more aggressive sounds of the Metal genre. The song thrashes and the drums are truly incredible. This is classic thrash Metal that works in this setting remarkable well. The vocal is astounding and the crowd reaction and participation threatens to drown out the sound from the stage. Metal at it’s finest!!!

Nailed To The Gun—-Another track from Halfords earlier incarnation Fight, the song is embraced by the crowd with an overwhelming excitement. Halford sings in a lower and more evil tone than I thought he was capable of. This is thrash Metal pure and simple…the only thing that saves it from obscurity is the remarkable vocal of Halfords. This is classic brutal late 90’s Metal.

Light Comes Out Of Black—-Yet another Fight classic, Halford explores the darker sounds of Metal. One wonders how this man can sing song after song like he does. The voice is incredible and on perfect display. This track has a nice marching beat that maintains a deeper and darker tone as Halford sings about everything that is dark in his life. This is remarkable and the voice never manages to growl or soar on cue. A wonderful spectacle!!!

Stained Class—-Halford asks the crowd if they are ready for some Priest and the entire arena goes beserk……the band delivers a crystal clear impersonation of the legendary band with a bit more energy and tone. Halford sounds almost as comfortable as the sock I am wearing and the result is a better version of this song than any I have of Priest performing it. This may seem like blasphemy to some but give it a listen…you will agree.

Jawbreaker—-Revisiting the Priest catalog and going waaayyyy back, Halford pulls out this classic and reenergize it and makes it sound even better. This is remarkable….the energy and the crowd response only makes the high points higher. the vocal energy and enunciation gives the song a new meaning and vitality. the crowd goes crazy for this track and it remains a high point of the set.

Running Wild—-Again, the song elicits a huge crowd response and you listen to the lyrics and can’t help but imagine Halford trolling the back streets and alleys as he searches for anon sex! This has great energy, double entendres and a vitality that keeps the crowd hungry for more. Wonderful!!!

Slow Down—-From the Resurrection CD, Halford delivers a vocal that mixes all the best elements of his repertoire. The song has a slight blues lean…the voice alternates from a comfortable mid range to a more familiar histrionic version. the song is a nice almost mellow break compared to the first 1/4 of the set….this I’m sure, gives Halford a vocal rest. Powerful and musically fantastic, the band is in the best form ever.

The One You Love To Hate [featuring Bruce Dickinson]—-Recorded while the Halford band was touring with Iron Maiden and Queensryche, make no mistake who is the star of this show. Dickinson seems to deliver a lack luster vocal while Halford takes the reins and delivers a blistering performance. this is Heavy Metal history none the less and the entire release is worth having just for this song.

Life In Black—-Greeted by a huge crowd response and an even deeper bass delivery, the song is a return to the glory days of Halford’s first solo bad Fight. This is much more polished and shined. The live delivery is better than the recorded version….the vocals are more inspired and real…the pace of the music crawling but remaining electric. When Halford lets loose that ‘Life”…..gosh….is there anything better?

Hell’s Last Survivor—-Coming across even larger than Priest, the band is so tight and polished that you can only shake your head and wonder why Halford ever went back to Priest. This is fantastic. The voice is so divine and wonderfully executed you still shake your head in amazement after a full 30 years of recording. Halford is the only Metal singer who has never lost his ability…and we are the fortunate recipients of this….remarkable…bone chilling.

Sad Wings—-Released only on the Japanese release of Resurrection, I wonder why this was never an US single. This is one of the best tracks that Halford has ever produced in his solo career and a true Priest classic…without the Priest!!! The vocal is amazing…the musical landscape is pure Priest….you cannot escape the comparisons…this should be included on a release by the afore-mentioned band. Gosh…I love this song and this voice…….

Saviour—-Delivering yet another blistering twin guitar attack, the band is so tight and polished you wonder how long they practised before the outing that produced these recordings. Roy Z. is a mastermind!!! This is remarkable not only for the musicianship, but also for the classic vocal delivery that goes up and down with little effort and a seemingly relish that is perfect. This is classic Metal.

Silent Screams—-At almost 8 minutes, this remains one of my favorite Halford songs…the mood is dark and stripped bare. the emotion is raw and the message is clear…this is a wonderful coming out story for me as Halford truly embraces who he is. this is so pure and emotion filled, you will find bumps on your arms and the back of your neck. this has great mood swings and emotion that you can’t escape from. You will return to this time and time again to examine the lyrics and the emotion. This is fantastic!!!


Disc 2:

Cyberworld—-Also taken from the debut Halford release, this song is full of a new metal energy that still manages to be encompassed by the vocal of Halford. the energy is incredible and the pace of the song is such that you wonder how so many words can for in one sentence. This is melodic without losing integrity and Metal without losing melody. Remarkable.

The Hellion/Electric Eye—-Never one of my favorite concert staples, this song never seemed to do much for me…the crowd disagrees as it goes wild during the 30 second Hellion intro. This was just one of those songs that lacked a certain Priest-ness for me, although the band playing is full throttle and the vocal seems more invigorated and real than ever. This is just an opinion…that is what Blogging is all about right???

Riding On The Wind—-Amazing that Halford is able to deliver such a song after the hour and a half he has already screamed, he never lets the audience down and delivers the track like it was the first of the set. If you listened to this as a random track, you would never think that this was anything but Priest during its hey-day. Remarkable in energy and clarity…the audience just loves this man.

Genocide  [First Encore]—-With aggressive guitars and a high hat drum ushering in the song, the kick jumps in and the wall of sound threatens to blow your speakers. the band waits and the crowd screams for Halford to make his return and they are rewarded with a vocal performance that is just as good as the very first song. The energy never lags and the vitality of the song never clouds. This is fantastic!!!

Beyond The Realms Of Death—-One of the most classic Priest songs ever, this delivered live by THIS band results in an even more emotional and moving rendition than I ever thought possible. This is so good, it replaces the Priest version on my Ipod everytime. An incredible song…even in its studio version, live in this setting, it just seems to rip my heart out. The delivery is raw, real and full of every emotion you can imagine.

Metal Gods [Second Encore]—-My favorite Priest song ever, it only reminds you that indeed, Halford is THE METAL GOD!!!! No one in the industry has kept their ability,   integrity and true love of Metal like this man has. This is a true ode to a true master and a damn good song st the same time. And do I need to tell you….the crowd goes freaking’ berserk!!!!

Breaking the Law—-I suppose any show would be incomplete without this song…at this point I am just like….ugh! SORRY!

Tyrant—-Halford ends the show in a blistering display of the talent that his ‘back-up’ band displayed throughout this remarkable show. This band was tight as hell and only complemented the vocal of Halford. This is remarkable and a great, fantastic, incredible way to end the evening.

[Studio Tracks]

Screaming In The Dark—-Delivered with a blistering machine gun styled guitar, the song even seems to have a cannon in it….how metal is that???? Halford sings at a blistering level and a speed that seems super human. this is far more aggressive than anything that ended up on the Crucible release…remarkable, brutal and delivering a drink to the thirst you have been dying of.

Heart Of A Lion—-By now, to any real fan, this song has become old as it has appeared on releases all over the map. This is acceptable, but someone in the upper room obviously though this was a huge hit and kept releasing it over and over. not the best, not the worst….but there is so much better out there.

Prisoner Of Your Eyes—-This is odd…..the intro finds Halford singing through some type of auto tune device that he does not need. When the song comes full circle, the guitar attack is aggressive and harmonic….the ballad style of the song works with the mood swings of the song but the manipulated working of the vocal is annoying and distracting and really. really unnecessary.

****3/4 out of 5


One Response to “Halford/Live Insurrection”

  1. an overlooked classic. I liked the studio albums, but this still blows me away…glad to know it’s appreciated by others….

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