"These guys are so real, beautiful and caring. That's what I love about them." Judas Priest's Rob Halford heaps praise on Metallica for their pure love of heavy metal

Rob Halford and James Hetfield
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Judas Priest frontman and living Metal God Rob Halford has spoken about his deep love and respect for fellow metal legends Metallica in a new interview. Speaking to Ultimate Classic Rock, Halford discusses the blockbuster Power Trip festival that took place in October 2023, featuring Priest and Metallica both playing during the weekend alongside AC/DC, Guns N' Roses, Iron Maiden and Tool. Footage of Metallica guitarists James Hetfield and Kirk Hammett rocking out with fans during Priest's set went viral soon after the festival, and Halford has revealed that both bands got to hang out following the show.

"All of the guys from Metallica were out in the front and they came to hang out with us after the show," says Halford. "There was all of this friendship and all of this camaraderie. All of the bands that performed at Power Trip, we all know each other and we've all lived very similar lives. It's like that family environment where you all connect. You look at each other and you know what you do, you know where you've been and you know the experiences you've had. Because all musicians have very, very similar life experiences. So it was great, you know?

"I was talking to James [Hetfield] about it," the Priest singer continues. "[He said,] 'Nah, we wouldn't have missed this for the world. We saw everybody.' I wish I would have had that opportunity. Just to emphasize that again - here's the biggest metal band in the world and they're out front. Air guitar and heavy metal horns in the air with all of the fans. They're the most amazing people in the business as far as keeping your feet on the ground. It's no more of the '80s thing, 'I'm not getting in the limo because it's two degrees too warm.' There's none of that! These guys are so real, beautiful and caring. That's what I love about them. There's this nurturing that they have, not only for each other, but for other bands that they're fans of. It's a very real thing for Metallica."

Last week, Judas Priest released new single Crown Of Horns, the third track to be unveiled from the British metal icons' imminent new studio album, Invincible Shield, which arrives on March 8 via Columbia Records. The album precedes the band's upcoming European tour.

Judas Priest Invincible Shield tracklist

1. Panic Attack
2. The Serpent And The King
3. Invincible Shield
4. Devil In Disguise
5. Gates Of Hell
6. Crown Of Horns
7. As God Is My Witness
8. Trial By Fire
9. Escape From Reality
10. Sons Of Thunder
11. Giants In The Sky

Judas Priest 2024 tour dates

March 11: Glasgow OVO Hydro, UK
March 13: Leeds First Direct Arena, UK
March 15: Dublin 2 Arena, Ireland
March 17: Bournemouth International Arena, UK
March 19: Birmingham Resorts World Arena, UK
March 21: London OVO Arena Wembley, UK
March 24: Frankfurt Festhalle, Germany
March 25: Munich Olympiastadion, Germany
March 27: Dortmund Westfalenhalle, Germany
March 29: Prague O2 Arena, Czechia
March 30: Krakow Tauron Arena, Poland
April 01: Vienna Wiener Stadthalle, Austria
April 03: Basel St Jakobshalle, Switzerland
April 05: Lyon Halle Tony Garnier, France
April 06: Assago Mediolanum Forum, Italy
April 08: Paris Zenith, France

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He has also presented and produced the Metal Hammer Podcast, presented the Metal Hammer Radio Show and is probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.