JUDAS PRIEST guitarist K.K. Downing has issued a statement via the group's official web site commenting on their reunion with vocalist Rob Halford and thanking former singer Tim "Ripper" Owens for his contributions to the band.
Downing's statement reads as follows:
"HELLO TO THE WORLD!
"Well I guess you have all heard by now - yes Rob Halford is back in the saddle again! We are all primed and ready to rock! Rob's infamous deadly PRIEST screams are razor sharp and ready to inflict some damage..........
"Rob and ourselves are also really looking forward to thrashing out new PRIEST riffs and melodies for you all to savour and of course as soon as the new Metal is forged we will be hitting the road with a vengeance. The wheels of the mighty PRIEST Machine will soon roll again - even though PRIEST have been around the world many times there are still a lot of countries we have not covered - you know who you are so please be patient - we will be coming soon!
"I would like to say a really big metal thank you to Ripper for being a truly great singer and performer and a really good friend. There is no doubt that Ripper will continue to be a great Ambassador of Metal and we all wish him every success - although we already consider him a Legend!
"Also all of you Metalheads out there, I can't say how much your devotion to JUDAS PRIEST is a credit to you and without your loyalty and support we would not be able to continue this the next chapter of JUDAS PRIEST history!!
"Sincere thanks to you all, K.K. DOWNING"