Judas Priest : Turbo 30(Remastered 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition)

I’m just going to come out and say it, Judas Priest’s Turbo was a damn good album. It was much maligned by the long-haired, leather-88875183271 Judas Priest Turbo 30 Vinyl Outer.inddwearing metal dudes that pumped fists to songs like “Breaking The Law”, “The Green Manalishi(with the two-pronged crown)”, “Livin’ After Midnight”, and “Electric Eye”, but that’s their problem, man. Turbo wasn’t the sell out album that all the heshers driving in souped-up Cutlass Supremes and Chevy Novas said it was. In fact Priest was doing what they always did, which was following the muse wherever she(or he) took them. Sure, it was this slick, futuristic Judas Priest that was playing heavily with the newfangled sounds of the 80s, mainly synth-ing up things a bit. But really, if there ever was a futuristic, forward-thinking metal band pushing boundaries and taking names wasn’t that band Judas freakin’ Priest? Turbo was following two standout albums like Screaming For Vengeance and Defenders Of The Faith, and feels like the next step. 30 years on even more so.

Turbo for me holds a special place in my heart. It’s the first Priest album I truly fell for. With nothing more than a dubbed copy from one of my dad’s friends from work and the highway-stained video for “Turbo Lover” I was hooked. I remember climbing up on my mom and dad’s roof, Walkman in tow, and listening to “Parental Guidance” with visions of destroying the PMRC ala Terminator-style. “Up yours, Tipper Gore! C’mon Halford, we’ve got some butts to kick!” I had an active imagination, guys. There was just this upbeat drive throughout the album. I had just begun to play guitar, so I’d also taken an interest in Glen Tipton and K.K. Downing’s impressive guitar work. They’d seemed to have jumped the fence from blues-based fretwork into something more progressive. Lot’s of wholly impressive guitar lines. “Rock You All Around The World” is a speed demon locomotive of a track with some of that previously mentioned impressive guitar work. My 12-year old brain was getting a workout.

As far as sing-a-long stadium anthems, Turbo had you covered. Like the aforementioned “Rock You All Around The World”, you had “Turbo Lover”, “Private Property”, “Wild Nights, Hot & Crazy Days”, and of course “Parental Guidance” that were stadium and coliseum ready. Fists pumping and scantily clad girls in cut-off t-shirts hiked up on the shoulders of The Decline Of Western Civilization: The Metal Years rejects. These songs are classic Judas Priest, just in shiny new packaging. Then you’ve got tracks like “Hot For Love” and “Reckless” that bring back some of that 70s menace from albums like Rocka Rolla, Sad Wings Of Destiny, and Sin After Sin. 

This is primo Judas Priest, folks. This is Priest for the Reagan years.

Someone else felt the same way as I did so Turbo has been reissued in a shiny new remastered form. There’s a deluxe version that includes a live show recorded at Kemper Arena in Kansas City back in May of 1986. It’s a quality live recording that hits up all their eras up to that point. It’s a solid window into just how powerful Judas Priest were as a live band. And as far as I can tell no overdubs on this one, guys.

So I don’t know what your opinions were of this album back in 1986(or if you even had any opinions), but I’m telling you to put the negative memories off to the side, put on your leather jacket(and chaps if that’s your thing), and give Turbo another spin. This one has aged well, like a fine wine.

Or a well-worn studded leather wrist band.

8.5 out of 10



19 thoughts on “Judas Priest : Turbo 30(Remastered 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition)

  1. I really liked Turbo, bordering on love. I bought this new version on cd with the added live songs. It sounds awesome. Both the album and the live songs. I might say it could be Judas Priest’s best live recording.
    I think I would score it 9/10.

    Of note is the fact that Dave Holland is not on the new packaging. I get it though.

    As for digital recording, my Ry Cooder BopTil You Drop states on the jacket it was the first digitally recorded album (but not yet DDD).
    I had thought Love At First Sting was one of or the first DDD, but my memory has faded a lot over the years.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: In lumina
  3. Only have a couples of Judas Priest albums (none on vinyl, sadly), but this isn’t one of them. I think I got the ‘essential albums’ and this didn’t seem to fall into that category. Sounds – much like everything else – very much a case of ‘listen and make your own mind up, dude’.

    … and I’m digging these recent digs into the 80s rock n’ rolla, JH.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I didn’t wear a ton of leather back in ’86, although I’ll admit to regularly sporting leather cowboy boots, a leather belt with my name pressed into the back and, when appropriate, a great black leather motorcycle jacket. By ’86 however, my hair was certainly not as long as it had been over the preceding decade. Even so, I believe I did fit into your Turbo-maligning demographic. I honestly don’t even remember being aware of Turbo at the time. I was fully onboard through Defenders of the Faith but somehow lost awareness of any new Priest after that. I’ve since gone back and filled the Halford Priest gap from 1988’s Ram It Down all the way through 2014’s Redeemer of Souls, but no Turbo due to vague, received prejudices. Your persuasive defense of Turbo has me thinking it may be time to climb down off my (metal) elitist perch, eh?


What do you think? Let me know

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.