Tim “Ripper” Owens feels last Judas Priest album was fantastic but didn’t really sound like them
KK’s Priest and former Judas Priest frontman Tim “Ripper” Owens was recently interviewed by Jimmy Kay for Canada’s The Metal Voice. Owens was promoting KK’s Priest‘s debut album Sermons of The Sinner, which was released via Explorer1 Music Group/EX1 Records on August 20, 2021.
Owens‘ studio albums with Judas Priest date back to Jugulator (1997) and Demolition (2001). Judas Priest replaced Owens in 2003 with their returning classic line-up frontman Rob Halford and the group has released a number of albums ever since then with its most recent record Firepower dating back to 2018. Firepower landed the #2 spot on the Sleaze Roxx Readers’ Top 20 Albums of 2018 and #9 on the Sleaze Roxx’s Top Ten Albums of 2018.
When asked should this new KK’s Priest album have been the follow up to Demolition, Owens indicated (as transcribed by The Metal Voice with slight edits) “I don’t know. The thing about Judas Priest is they change and did whatever they wanted because they were Judas Priest. Every record sounded different except for ‘Screaming For Vengeance‘ and ‘Defenders of The Faith‘. Their last album was fantastic but it didn’t really sound like Judas Priest because they didn’t really write it. It was a great record but everything sounds different. What would have been next after Demolition? I don’t know. This new record [KK’s Priest‘s debut album] well could have been. I think what this record [KK’s Priest] shows is what kind of record K.K. wanted to make with Judas Priest because this is how he writes. This shows you why records become what they are. This new record shows just so much of K.K. Downing. K.K. wrote the record that he wanted to write and he wanted to write it for me to sing.”
In terms of the musical style for KK’s Priest‘s songs, Owens stated: “There are a lot of layers. There are a lot of epic kinds of songs is how I like to describe it. There is a lot going on. Actually it goes back to early Judas Priest. Listen to Rocka Rolla. Rocka Rolla was filled with that stuff and guess who wrote most of that album — K.K. Downing. The song ‘Return of The Sentinel’ is one of my favorite songs off the new album. It is a little more musical in the classic metal way. I think K.K. has taken ‘Sad Wings of Destiny‘ and ‘Rocka Rolla‘ influences and just brought it to nowadays.”
You can listen to the interview with Tim “Ripper” Owens on The Metal Voice podcast below:
Judas Priest‘s “No Surrender” video (from Firepower album):