Rob Halford is adding one more asset to an already admirable list – that of indefatigability. The Metal God is 59 years old now, and he’s been in the game since 1974, and yet here is a record brimming with an exuberance that would shame a 15 year old holding his first guitar.
It would almost be un-British to criticise the man. He’s probably the closest thing Heavy Metal has got to a national treasure.
That said, Halford is a reductive project when compared to Judas Priest. As Priest have become ever more expansive – contrast British Steel’s industrial grit to the cold sci-fi of and the grandiose vision of Nostradamus – Halford have become more singular, to the point where this fourth album lives up to its title utterly.
Through Fight, 2wo and now Halford, Rob has channelled all of his baser instincts. That unmistakable sonic shriek begins on _Undisputed _and is not quieted until The Mower – an extraordinary tune – fades out some 14 songs later.
The teeth-rattling power of Made Of Metal and We Own The Night stand out, but this is a record – and a man – to be heard and appreciated in full.