Judas Priest hits the Forum in August.

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Judas Priest hits the St. Pete Times Forum on August 16. This is awesome because I don't have another drive to Ft. Lauderdale in me!

Priest will emulate the recent old-songs-only Maiden tour by performing the classic British Steel album in its entirety.  Bonus - as if you needed one: Whitesnake will provide support.

Priest last visited Tampa while opening for, and vastly outshining, the reunited Black Sabbath at Ozzfest '04. Frontman Rob Halford's stage presence was definitely lacking. He moved slowly and deliberately around the stage, and perched like a vulture to sing. His voice, however, was as strong as in Priest's heyday. K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton delivered their trademark dual guitar melodies. And drummer Scott Travis' steady double-kick injected new life and ferocity into the band's classic material as he has since he joined the band prior to Painkiller.

Unlike my Maiden experience, I've seen Priest twice before - once with Tim "Ripper" Owens, the tribute-band singer whose story inspired the godawful film Rock Star, and once with Halford - but I'm still excited! The band re-visiting British Steel will be a treat. It's not the album I would have picked, but it's what introduced the band to their American audience. Besides, anything that distracts Priest from their mediocre post-reunion material, particularly the ridiculous Nostradamus concept album, is appreciated.

"Breaking The Law" from Rising In the East (2005)

"A Touch of Evil" from Rising In the East (2005)

"Hell Bent For Leather" from Live Vengeance '82 (1982)

Barely a month ago, I finally witnessed Iron Maiden live. It literally took half my life to see them. I documented the journey, from the show's announcement through its conclusion. While nothing could top my Maiden experience, it seems the Metal Gods continue smiling down on me nonetheless.  After all, you can't mention Iron Maiden without bringing up Judas Priest.

Is it possible? Maiden and Priest playing Florida in the same year?

Concert details and video after the jump.

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