Downing says Priest had lost their spark

Former Judas Priest guitarist KK Downing says he misses being in the band, but doesn't regret his decision to leave.

Downing, who had been with Preist since 1970, left the metal icons in 2011 and was replaced by Richie Faulkner.

And while his departure was put down to a breakdown in the working relationship with his bandmates, Downing now recalls not feeling “the spark” towards the end of his tenure.

He tells Digital Journal: “I felt that a lot of the spark wasn’t there, for whatever reason, on stage. I felt I had it, but felt it wasn’t what I originally signed up for. I always thought that Judas Priest should have been a high-energy outfit and ultra-sharp, but I wasn’t enjoying it as much on stage as I should have been.

“All that travelling and living out of a suitcase and spending so much time in planes, vans, cars and trains, you have to really enjoy the concerts. You have to musically get on a high and that carries you through, but if you’re not enjoying it like you should, then it becomes a lot of hard work because you’ve still got to do the interviews and be pushed and pulled around the place.

“I don’t regret leaving because, to me, I thought that it had run its course. I miss what we had, but I don’t particularly miss what we had become when I left.”

He adds that he is happy for the band and he is pleased to see them carrying on the legacy he helped build.

This week, Priest frontman Rob Halford said he expected a backlash when he came out about his sexuality.

Judas Priest released their latest album Redeemer Of Souls in July.

Stef wrote close to 5,000 stories during his time as assistant online news editor and later as online news editor between 2014-2016. An accomplished reporter and journalist, Stef has written extensively for a number of UK newspapers and also played bass with UK rock favourites Logan. His favourite bands are Pixies and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. Stef left the world of rock'n'roll news behind when he moved to his beloved Canada in 2016, but he started on his next 5000 stories in 2022.