Judas Priest singer Rob Halford said the band’s upcoming album includes “some of our best work.” They recently confirmed that the follow-up to 2014's Redeemer of Souls will be titled Firepower and will arrive early next year.

The LP was co-producer by veterans Andy Sneap and Tom Allom, and marks the second occasion that guitarist Ritchie Faulkner, who replaced KK Downing in 2011, contributed as a songwriter alongside Halford and Glenn Tipton.

“We make music now, obviously still for our own pleasure and enjoyment in the challenge of finding a new riff and a new melody is always very … it’s a great feeling,” Halford told VintageRock.com at the Loudwire Music Awards, where he’d been honored with the “Lemmy” Lifetime Achievement Award.

“It’s Ritchie’s moment really," Halford said. "When we did Redeemer of Souls with Ritchie, obviously it was his first time with Priest as a writer. I think it was great how Ritchie, coming into the band at that point, and then going through the writing experience and the world tour together …”

He then turned to Faulkner and continued, “I’m speaking maybe out of line here, but I think it put you in a better place for when we went into do Firepower.” “Without doubt,”  Faulkner agreed. “Just because you learn so much in a band,” Halford continued. “Ritchie’s playing is f---ing unbelievable on this album, and just the contribution as the writing team of Ritchie, Glenn and myself – this is some of our best work, without a doubt.”

Asked about the British icons’ longevity, Faulkner noted that he’d witnessed the band’s passion as a fan and then as a member, saying “the passion drives the metal.” “We’re a hard-working metal band, still making the metal 40-odd years later thanks to our glorious metal fans around the world,” Halford added.

You can watch the interview above.

Judas Priest also confirmed a U.S. tour in support of Firepower that begins on March 13, 2018, in Wilkes Barre, Penn., and ends on May 1 in San Antonio. By the time the tour starts, the band will know whether it will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame next year.


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