Second re-release of the second full-length album by the legendary British Hard Rock/Heavy Metal band.
"Sad Wings Of Destiny" is considered the album on which Judas Priest consolidated their sound and image, and songs from it such as "Victim of Changes" and "The Ripper" have since become live standards. Noted for its riff-driven Heavy Metal sound and the wide range of Rob Halford's vocals, the album displays a wide variety of styles, moods, and textures, inspired by an array of bands such as Queen, Deep Purple, and Black Sabbath.
The centrepiece "Victim of Changes" is an eight-minute track featuring heavy riffing trading off with high-pitched vocals, extended guitar leads, and a slow, moody breakdown toward the end. "Tyrant" and "The Ripper" are short, dense, high-powered rockers with many parts and changes. Riffs and solos dominate "Genocide", "Island of Domination", and "Deceiver", and the band finds more laid-back moments in the crooning piano-backed "Epitaph" and the moody "Dreamer Deceiver".
Sad Wings of Destiny had a positive reception but weak sales as it was released just as Punk Rock was dominating the spotlight in the UK. The band recorded their first two albums with the independent Gull label under tight budgets - the label provided a recording budget of £2000 for each of the band's first two albums). After living off a single meal per day while working side jobs to support themselves (Tipton as a gardener, Downing in a factory, and Hill driving a delivery van), the band grew frustrated with the financial situation and signed with CBS Records for their next album, "Sin After Sin" (1977). Breaking their contract resulted in the rights to "Sad Wings Of Destiny" and its demo recordings falling into Gull's hands. "Sad Wings Of Destiny" was the only album to feature drummer Alan Moore.
Anyway, the year 1976 was crucial for the evolution of Heavy Metal, as landmark albums like Rainbow's "Rising" and Scorpions' "Virgin Killer" began to reshape the genre. Perhaps none was quite as important as Judas Priest's sophomore effort, "Sad Wings Of Destiny", which simultaneously took Heavy Metal to new depths of darkness and new heights of technical precision! Building on the Hard/Prog of bands like Queen and Wishbone Ash, plus the twin-guitar innovations of the latter and Thin Lizzy, "Sad Wings" fused these new influences with the Gothic Doom of Black Sabbath, the classical precision of Deep Purple, and the tight riffery of the more compact Led Zeppelin tunes!! More than any other Heavy Metal album of its time, "Sad Wings Of Destiny" offered the blueprint for the way forward. What's striking is how deeply this blueprint resonates through the years, from the Prog ambitions of Iron Maiden to the thematic echoes in a pair of '80s Thrash masterpieces!!!
Gull Records/Repertoire Records, 1976/1983/1995 (REP 4552-WY). Made in EU. Digitally remastered.
1. Victim Of Changes 7:44
2. The Ripper 2:48
3. Dreamer Deceiver 5:53
4. Deceiver 2:44
5. Prelude 2:02
6. Tyrant 4:26
7. Genocide 5:46
8. Epitaph 3:21
9. Island Of Domination 4:20
Total playing time: 39:04