JUDAS PRIEST bassist Ian Hill has confirmed to Sonic Perspectives that there are plans for the band to work on the follow-up to last year's "Firepower" album. "Yeah, that's very much on the cards," he said (hear audio below). "We're already discussing that. We found out Glenn [Tipton, guitar] is already sitting at home, knocking riffs and chord sequences out. [Laughs] We might get back [from tour and find out there is] an album's worth material [ready to be worked on]. There are some ideas that weren't used on the last record as well — very strong ideas that we never got around to completing. So it's very much on the cards. When that will happen, I don't know. Obviously, we've got this [North American tour] leg to come, and we've got rearranged [European] shows with Ozzy [Osbourne] coming up, now rearranged for February. We're hoping that's gonna happen. Next year is gonna be a sort of 50-year celebration. So probably sometime after that, maybe. We'll see. We'll see when we can get our heads down to it."
Tipton announced his retirement from touring in February 2018 after revealing his unfortunate diagnosis of Parkinson's disease. He passed on the torch to the producer of the "Firepower" album, Andy Sneap.
Tipton was diagnosed with the degenerative neurological disorder five years ago, after being stricken by the condition at least half a decade earlier. The guitarist, who is now 71 and has performed on every PRIEST record since the band's 1974 debut set, "Rocka Rolla", is not quitting the band, but simply cannot handle the rigorous challenges of performing live.
Glenn has appeared onstage with PRIEST many times following his retirement, always performing the same fan-favorite tracks "Metal Gods", "Breaking The Law" and "Livin' After Midnight".
PRIEST's current touring lineup consists of Hill, singer Rob Halford, guitarists Sneap and Richie Faulkner, and drummer Scott Travis.
JUDAS PRIEST will return to the U.S. for a spring run with fellow classic heavy rockers URIAH HEEP. The 32-date trek will kick off on May 3 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida and wrap on June 29 at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada.