(Columbia/Sony, 1982, 10 tracks, 38 minutes, 50 seconds)
We saw a more bone shaking metal sound begin to develop with this album and particular position into Judas Priest’s discography as they began to refine their earlier metallic forays into something more headbang worthy. This offers a brief glimpse at one of the sounds they began to develop over the course of their career and does so spectacularly.
The first thing you’ll notice about Screaming for Vengeance is that the songs sound more metallic. This is an aspect that spills nicely into the entire presentation as we can see them taking a powerful approach and they stun you multiple times with pristine production values helping things along as they go.
The chorus’ on the album are particularly catchy as they chime in your ear for long periods of time after the listening period. One can see themselves chanting “Riding on the Wind”, for example, multiple times after many listens and this can be attributed to the style the album takes which is fun, but not overly simplistic.
Yes, the dynamics of the album are still interesting as can be seen from the title track “Screaming for Vengeance”, which takes many twists and turns as it goes through its length quite effectively. There’s a certain flair to the songs which gives them a memorable quality leading to multiple listens and eventual worship of what’s on display.
In terms of placing the album in the overall flow of their discography, it’s probably my second or third favourite as Sad Wings of Destiny and Stained Class are possibly better than it, but the race is very close. It brings a more streamlined approach together than their seventies classics, but remains a very compelling release regardless.
The lyrical material of the album is interesting. There’s a flavour of wanting power and the ability to be above other things and this just adds to the metallic touch of Screaming for Vengeance quite effectively. We always feel at home to the manners that Judas Priest have of pulling you into their fierce world.
The band is just at an intense peak on Screaming for Vengeance and plays with a passion for their music that is unparalled by most of the music world. They just show their ability to make a song catchy and yet entertaining at the same time quite well on this album and makes for one of the most all around great albums in the band’s discography.