According to Billboard.com, JUDAS PRIEST's 17th studio album, "Redeemer Of Souls", is likely to sell more than 30,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release, resulting in the band's first-ever Top 10 effort in the U.S. The estimate was based on sales reports compiled after the record arrived in stores on July 8 via Epic. The chart will be unveiled on Wednesday, July 16.
JUDAS PRIEST's 2008 double-disc concept album, "Nostradamus", shifted 42,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at position No. 11 on The Billboard 200 chart. This marked the band's highest-ever chart position in the U.S. In Canada, the CD opened at position No. 9 after moving close to 4,000 units.
JUDAS PRIEST's 2005 CD, "Angel of Retribution", premiered with 58,000 copies in the U.S. to debut at No. 13.
The following are the peak U.S. chart positions for the PRIEST catalog:
#11 - "Nostradamus" (2008)
#13 - "Angel of Retribution" (2005)
#165 - "Demolition" (2001)
#82 - "Jugulator" (1997)
#155 - "Metalworks" (1993)
#26 - "Painkiller" (1990)
#31 - "Ram It Down" (1988)
#38 - "Priest Live" (1987)
#17 - "Turbo" (1986)
#18 - "Defenders of the Faith" (1984)
#17 - "Screaming for Vengeance" (1982)
#39 - "Point of Entry" (1981)
#34 - "British Steel" (1980)
#70 - "Unleashed in the East" (1979)
#128 - "Hell Bent for Leather" (1978)
#178 - "Stained Class" (1978)
JUDAS PRIEST's most successful album to date is 1982's "Screaming For Vengeance", which spent 53 weeks on the Billboard charts, receiving gold RIAA sales certification on October 29, 1982, platinum on April 18, 1983 and double platinum October 16, 2001. The album included the band's only U.S. top 100 hit single, "You've Got Another Thing Comin'".
Other million-seller RIAA certifications for JUDAS PRIEST are "Priest Live" (October 29, 2001), "Turbo" (July 24, 1989), "Defenders of the Faith" (September 26, 1988), "British Steel" (August 9, 1989) and "Unleashed in the East" (November 10, 1989).
JUDAS PRIEST also has gold albums certifications (500,000 sales) for "Stained Class" (November 10, 1989), "Hell Bent For Leather" (November 10, 1989), "Point of Entry" (November 10, 1989), "Ram It Down" (July 18, 1988) and "Painkiller" (January 2, 1991).
In the band's home country of the U.K., 1980's "British Steel" remains their most successful outing, peaking at No. 4 in the charts and launching three hit singles: "Living After Midnight", which peaked at No. 12; "Breaking The Law" No. 12 and "United" No. 26.
Speaking to the "Trunk Nation" show, which airs on SiriusXM's Hair Nation, singer Rob Halford stated about "Redeemer Of Souls": "When we finished [the] 'Epitaph' [tour], we just got so buzzed from the fans and the reaction wherever we went. Just to put the 'Epitaph' tour together, which was we tried to put a song from every record into the show, and we were living in the life of JUDAS PRIEST, all those decades, in one show, night after night on the world trek, and I think that really did something to us internally; as musicians, it should do when you tour. So we realized that this next record really had to be really strong, full of energy, because it's relentless, the tracks are relentless. The energy that you feel off 'Redeemer Of Souls' is replicated in that direction time and time and time again."
Asked what the band was looking to achieve artistically on this record, Halford told VH1.com: "We never ever sit down and kind of premeditate what we're going to do. That's the great purity of PRIEST's music. It does come from the heart. We just sit down with a bunch of guitars and the riffs start cranking and we put the vocal melodies together and so on. So it comes from a very pure source. I think this was an opportunity after 'Nostradamus', our first concept record, which we had an amazing time putting together, but enough time had passed from it to kind of want to reaffirm who we are, which is a classic British heavy metal band. So with that thought in mind the metal started roaring and we feel that all of these songs from 'Redeemer Of Souls' reemphasize that statement about what this band is trying to be in the heavy metal world." Guitarist Glenn Tipton added: "What we intended to do with this album is predominately create a live-sounding album. The guitars were all mic'ed up. The drums aren’t programmed, they're played. We stripped down Rob's vocals to a bare minimum of effects and just wanted to play. First and foremost, JUDAS PRIEST are a great live band and that’s what we wanted to achieve in the studio."
Regarding why there are five "bonus" tracks that are included on the deluxe version of "Redeemer Of Souls" and do not appear on the CD's regular version, Tipton said: "They are all great songs. The reason they are not on the album is because the 13 that we chose are very consistent with what we wanted to do, which was release an undisputable heavy metal album. The others, they are not lightweight by any chance, but they've got a different feel, a different texture. So it's not a case of trying to rip the kids off and trying to get more money for an extra album, it's just a case of, these five tracks seem to deserve to go on their own CD, and that's what we did."
Added Halford: "We didn't want to drop the energy. From the opening thunder-and-lightning on 'Dragonaut' right up 'till the end of 'Battle Cry', it's just full-on, it's relentless. It's great."
"Redeemer Of Souls" CD track listing:
02. Redeemer Of Souls
03. Halls Of Valhalla
04. Sword Of Damocles
05. March Of The Damned
06. Down In Flames
07. Hell & Back
08. Cold Blooded
11. Secrets Of The Dead
12. Battle Cry
13. Beginning Of The End
15. Tears Of Blood
17. Bring It On
18. Never Forget