British Steel (Exp)
CD, 追加トラック, オリジナルレコーディングのリマスター, 2001/5/30
The guitar riff from "Breaking the Law" is one of the most recognizable from early 1980s heavy metal. Though British Steel sounds dated these days, it's also a classic slice of metal, one of the best from a band that defined the genre in the late '70s and early '80s. Everything that ultimately became characteristic of heavy metal is here, from the lightning-fast riffs on "Rapid Fire," the anthemic "Metal Gods," and "United" to the obligatory party song "Living After Midnight" to the equally obligatory youth-rebellion song, "You Don't Have to Be Old to Be Wise." British Steel is unquestionably Priest at their peak. The 2001 remastered reissue includes two bonus tracks--a previously unavailable studio selection called "Red, White & Blue" and a live take on "Grinder." --Genevieve Williams
後輩のNWOBH(Mew Wave Of British Heavy Metal）の
ベタベタ、ドタドタ聴こえるDave Holland の
曲目ではyou dont have〜やsteelerやgrinderなどあまりliveでやらない曲をやっているので新鮮です
またEPITAPH WORLD TOURでも最初rapid fireから始まったので、ライブに行った方は最初のrapid fireで、LIVEの時のドキドキワクワクが返ってきます
This ultimately proved popular with the youth. However, compromises were clearly made to achieve this. I do not believe this was their best album, in the same way that I do not believe that “Breaking the Law” was their best song.
Lead singer Rob Halford’s vocals, while still stunning, suffer from poorly written material, and are not quite as sharp as previously. Similarly, the drums are uninspiring, and the guitar riffs lack complexity, giving the album a sense of repetitiveness.
Indeed, while there are many excellent tracks, there is are a few definite “fillers” such as “United” and “Red White and Blue”.
However, there are some truly catchy guitar riffs such as “Rapid Fire” Metal Gods” and “Grinder”. The basslines throughout were excellent, in particular on “The Rage”.
Unusually, the 2001 re-master is in fact quite good (I own the re-master on CD, and the original on Vinyl), and, as a bonus, comes a very heavy live recording of “Grinder”. Even to this day, the album is timeless. Classic metal, and well worth a purchase.
The more commercial songs haven’t aged well, but the rest are all true classics. Play loud!
So I approached this with some degree of caution. Happily, when faced with material as good as Steel it's hard not to rise to the occasion and on 'Rapid Fire' through 'Metal Gods' the band and Rob sound magnificent. As with most of their older stuff played live it now has a contemporary twist, meaning in simplistic terms it's heavier than the proverbial battering ram. This really kicks of as a celebration by the band, as the gusto in the performance carries them nicely through Breaking The Law and the crunching Grinder - even Rob is in a good mood - `Hello everybody' he chirps uncharacteristically after the first two songs. He even manages to stand up straight at one point, propped up on a microphone stand that clocks in at 7 or 8 foot long (I'm not kidding).
However where the contemporary approach is less successful is on the subsequent more melodic tracks such as You Don't Have To Be Old To Be Wise, United and Living After Midnight, which are more pop/rock songs. Rob's new gravelly and aggressive vocal style, where he clips words, snarls and remains uncomfortably within the high range, lends itself well to the uptempo more aggressive thrashy numbers like Freewheel Burning, Rapid Fire and Steeler, but it sits much more incongruously on the more melodic slower tracks. Also, in terms of the DVD set, the YouTube disconnected Rob does surface. During United the close up on him facing away from the audience (which is an ironic way to deliver a song called `United') shows him tired and drained, whilst the 'Freewheel Burning' section, delivered seated from the motorbike, is bizarre as he hides his face behind his arm throughout much of the song. What makes this odd is that come You've Got Another Thing Coming the more accessible Rob of old is back and he clearly having a ball, now stalking the stage like a caged panther and clearly connecting with the audience. It's almost as if he has taken his 'Metal God' persona too seriously and lost his high camp sense of humour in the process.
So in summary there is a lot of this that works well because it's celebratory and brutally heavy and, for the most part, the band is having a lot of fun running through an album that marked the pinnacle of their creativity. However there are a few parts where Rob's new vocal style doesn't sit as well with the more 'poppy' Steel material. Ultimately, though, when Steeler is unrelengtingly pounding from the speakers it scarcely seems to matter.