Deep Purple and Judas Priest join forces at Pepsi Center

Deep Purple and Judas Priest join forces at Pepsi Center

September 30, 2018 Off By Tina Hagerling

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Photos and review by Tina Hagerling

It was a tasty pairing of two long-time musical heavyweights when Deep Purple and Judas Priest graced the Pepsi Center’s stage Sunday night. From the hard and heavy to a slow churn – the sound from the amplifiers ran the gamut. As did the eras that made up the set lists.

I’ve seen Judas Priest more times than I can count. And while their music may no longer function as a soothing balm to my teenage angst, Rob Halford and company are always a welcome sight. In all their denim, leather and metal-studded glory.

Heavy riffs and Halford’s trademark piercing vocals were in full supply as they opened with the title track from their 18th studio album, Firepower. A mix of hard-hitting old and new followed that included “Lightning Strike,” “Turbo Lover” and “Hell Bent for Leather.” The band played like a well-oiled machine. Plowing through one fist-pounding anthem after another. And then capping their set with a three-song encore that included the crowd-rousing “Breaking the Law.”

While things may have mellowed a couple notches when Deep Purple took the stage, the experience was no less enjoyable. The band wasted little time capturing the crowd as they launched into a hopping rendition of the classic “Highway Star.” From there the rock veterans ventured through a 75 minute tour of various decades. Veering into way back territory with tracks like “Bloodsucker” and “Strange Kind of Woman,” and then jumping forward to the more recent “Uncommon Man.”

Things seemed to wrap up all too quickly as Gillan and his band capped the night with solid renditions of “Smoke on the Water” and “Hush.” The best shows leave you wanting more. And while either band could have easily played on  into the wee hours of the night, they instead took a graceful bow. Having served up just the right amount.