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After Judas Priest’s career-high ’Billboard ‘200 debut, Richie Faulkner’s hoping for a #1 album

todayJuly 24, 2023

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When the next Judas Priest album finally arrives, the metal legends will be following their highest-charting U.S. release.

Rob Halford and company’s last record, Firepower, debuted at #5 on the Billboard 200 upon its release in 2018 — a career-best in the States. Speaking with ABC Audio, guitarist Richie Faulkner shares that the chart success of Firepower “means a lot” to him as a member of Priest, and as a superfan of heavy metal.

“Priest, to me, has always been one of the bands that flies the flag for, not only heavy metal, but British heavy metal,” Faulkner shares. “I remember that week in the Billboard top 10 there was country and there was hip-hop and there was pop, and there was heavy metal right there in the middle of it all. It was proud, and it was unmistakable — there it was.”

When it debuted on the Billboard 200, Firepower shared the top 10 with albums by artists including Post MaloneEd SheeranLogic and Lil Yachty, as well as the Black Panther soundtrack.

“In modern times, there’s a healthy chunk of heavy metal right there for everyone to see,” Faulkner says. “So it means a lot.”

As Priest continues to chip away at a Firepower follow-up, Faulkner’s optimistic about repeating its Billboard success.

“Hopefully we can match that or maybe top it and push it up to #1,” he says.

In the meantime, Faulkner has also been rocking with his new band Elegant Weapons, which dropped their debut album, Horns for a Halo, in May.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Written by: ABC News

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