JUDAS PRIEST played the second show of the rescheduled “50 Heavy Metal Years” North American tour dates last night (Sunday, March 6) at Mission Ballroom in Denver, Colorado.
The band’s setlist was as follows:
01. One Shot At Glory
02. Lightning Strike
03. You’ve Got Another Thing Comin’
04. Freewheel Burning
05. Turbo Lover
06. Hell Patrol
07. The Sentinel
08. A Touch Of Evil
09. Rocka Rolla
10. Victim Of Changes
11. Desert Plains
12. Blood Red Skies
15. The Hellion / Electric Eye
16. Hell Bent For Leather
17. Breaking The Law
18. Living After Midnight
Fan-filmed video is available below.
The tour will conclude on April 13 at FirstOntario Centre in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Support on the trek is coming from QUEENSRŸCHE.
JUDAS PRIEST was forced to postpone around two dozen North American shows on its rescheduled 50th-anniversary tour in late September after the band’s guitarist Richie Faulkner suffered an acute cardiac aortic dissection during a performance at the Louder Than Life festival. He ended up undergoing a 10-hour life-saving surgery a short distance away at Rudd Heart and Lung Center at UofL Health – Jewish Hospital in Louisville, Kentucky.
QUEENSRŸCHE was originally set to support SCORPIONS on their rescheduled “Sin City Nights” Las Vegas residency in March-April 2022 but pulled out of the dates in order to take part in the JUDAS PRIEST tour. SCORPIONS have since tapped SKID ROW as the new opening act for the Vegas residency.
Faulkner‘s medical episode happened while he was performing the closing song of PRIEST‘s set on the final day of Louder Than Life. Faulkner later said in a statement: “As I watch footage from the Louder Than Life Festival in Kentucky, I can see in my face the confusion and anguish I was feeling whilst playing ‘Painkiller’ as my aorta ruptured and started to spill blood into my chest cavity.”
Two weeks after his surgery, Faulkner told reporters that he experienced a sharp pain as he was stepping off the stage. “That’s when it exploded,” he said.
“The more I read about it, the more astonishing it is to me to think that I even made it to the hospital,” he added. “The amount of time when I actually go the pain and when I turned up in the hospital and when we were actually operating, it was quite a lot of time. The more I read about it, the more unbelievable — that amount of time — I don’t know how I’m still around today.”
Faulkner said he had no history of heart complications and that the aliment came completely “out of the blue.”
“My point is I don’t even have high cholesterol and this could’ve been the end for me,” he said. “If you can get yourselves checked — do it for me, please.”
Aortic aneurysms are “balloon-like bulges in the aorta, the large artery that carries blood from the heart through the chest and torso,” according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control. Dissections happen when the “force of blood pumping can split the layers of the artery wall, allowing blood to leak in between them.”
Doctors said Faulkner will continue to be monitored and will receive a CT scan every six months for the first year.
Faulkner joined PRIEST in 2011 as the replacement for original guitarist K.K. Downing.
The Peoria concert took place less than two months after JUDAS PRIEST revealed that it would perform as a four-piece when it returns to the road in early March. A few hours later, the band’s touring guitarist Andy Sneap, who co-produced the group’s 2018 album “Firepower”, released a statement to BLABBERMOUTH.NET in which he said that he was “incredibly disappointed” by PRIEST‘s decision to carry on as a quartet and thanked the Rob Halford-fronted outfit for the “mind-blowing” opportunity to share the stage with one of his favorite bands. Meanwhile, PRIEST fans were understandably upset about the band’s decision to forgo its classic twin-guitar attack sound and made their feelings known on social media. Some even called for the return of Downing, who joined PRIEST in 1970 and remained in the group until 2011.
Only five days later, JUDAS PRIEST released a statement announcing that it was reversing its decision to tour as a four-piece, explaining that the bandmembers “decided unanimously” to continue their live shows “unchanged” with Halford, Faulkner, Ian Hill (bass), Scott Travis (drums) and Andy.
Less than two months ago, Downing said in an interview that it was “very, very strange” for PRIEST “to even think about” the possibility of going out as a quartet. “I’m like everybody else. I’m totally bemused,” he told the “Rock Of Nations With Dave Kinchen” classic rock show. It was just so extreme and insulting in a way, I guess, and insulting to Glenn as well. It was kind of a slap in the face, saying, ‘Okay, you two guys did it, but we think just one guy could do what…’ It kind of made us and everything that we’ve done and created, saying it was all superfluous, really, and didn’t really have the value that… I’m sure Glenn will agree with me that it does have a value.”