Painkiller (album)

Painkiller (album)

Infobox Album | Name = Painkiller
Type = studio
Artist = Judas Priest

Released = September 3, 1990
Recorded = 1990
Genre = Heavy metal
Length = 55:03
Label = Columbia
Producer = Chris Tsangarides
Reviews =
*Allmusic Rating|4|5 [ link]
*Rolling Stone Rating|5|5
Last album = "Ram It Down"
This album = "Painkiller"
Next album = "Jugulator"

"Painkiller" is a 1990 gold-certified album by British heavy metal band Judas Priest. The album was recorded at Miraval Studios, Brignoles, France in early 1990, and mixed at Wisseloord Studios, Hilversum, the Netherlands later that year. It was the first album with current drummer Scott Travis. The original LP, cassette and CD versions were released on September 3, 1990. A re-mastered CD was released in May 2001. The album received a Grammy nomination for Best Metal Performance at the February 20, 1991 33rd Annual Grammy Awards.

Following the poor sales of the album "Ram it Down",Fact|date=October 2007 which was itself an attempt at reconciling with the public over the perceived sellout, "Turbo",Fact|date=October 2007 Judas Priest returned to their classic '70s style, while borrowing contemporary speed metal techniques, resulting in their most critically acclaimed album in a decade. The album is viewed by some as the quintessential speed metal album and the style proved highly influential to European power metal bands such as Gamma Ray and Primal Fear.

Following the tour for this album, singer Rob Halford left the band and maintained little contact with his former bandmates throughout the 1990s. The reason for this was due to growing tension in the band, although not, as popularly attributed, because of Halford's homosexuality. Halford wanted to create his new band, Fight, and had to legally leave Judas Priest to allow his creation to be sold. Judas Priest declared that they did not exist anymore after Halford had left. However, they would record and tour a few years later, with singer Tim 'Ripper' Owens, on the albums "Jugulator" and "Demolition".

In May 2006, in Metal Hammer's "Top 20 Albums of All Time," "Painkiller" came in at number 13.Fact|date=October 2007

The Painkiller

The Painkiller itself is one of a series of fictional messiahs created by Judas Priest. The Painkiller is described as a metal messiah sent to the world to destroy evil and rescue mankind from destruction. The Painkiller is believed to be inspired by the fallen angel from the "Sad Wings of Destiny" album cover that Judas Priest recorded early in their musical years. He also makes an appearance along with the Hellion (from "Screaming for Vengeance") on the cover of "Metal Works '73-'93", and a reappearance on the cover of "Angel of Retribution".

The most noticeable feature of the Painkiller, besides his metal body is that he 'rides the metal monster'; a motorcycle with a dragon for the chassis and two circular saws for wheels.

Track listing

All songs written by Rob Halford, K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton, except where noted.
# "Painkiller" – 6:06
# "Hell Patrol" – 3:37
# "All Guns Blazing" – 3:58
# "Leather Rebel" – 3:35
# "Metal Meltdown" – 4:48
# "Night Crawler" – 5:45
# "Between the Hammer & the Anvil" – 4:49
# "A Touch of Evil" (Halford, Downing, Tipton, Chris Tsangarides) – 5:45
# "Battle Hymn" – 0:58
# "One Shot at Glory" – 6:49

2001 Bonus Tracks


  • "Living Bad Dreams" – 5:21
    # "Leather Rebel" (Live) – 3:39


    *A Touch of EvilBoth have promotional videos.


    *The title track was covered by the American death metal band Death on their album "The Sound of Perseverance", along with Brazilian power metal band Angra and Spanish band Saratoga. American death metal band Exmortus also covered Painkiller and frequently perform it live.
    *The song A Touch of Evil was covered by Lions Share.
    *Night Crawler was covered by Radakka and Cryptic Wintermoon.
    *Metal Meltdown was covered by death metal band Aurora Borealis.
    *The heavy metal band Krokus released an album of the same name in 1978.


    *Rob Halford - vocals
    *K.K. Downing - guitars
    *Glenn Tipton - guitars
    *Ian Hill - bass guitar
    *Scott Travis - drums
    *Don Airey - keyboards on "A Touch of Evil"

    External links

    * [ Extensive album info]

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