JUDAS PRIEST celebrates 15th anniversary of 'Nostradamus' with special t-shirt designs
British heavy metal legends JUDAS PRIEST are celebrating the 15th anniversary of their “Nostradamus” album by releasing three new t-shirt designs via their official webshop.
Released in 2008, the controversial symphonic heavy metal concept double album about Nostradamus was criticized by fans for not sounding like classic PRIEST and for consisting almost entirely of slow, doomy, operatic, keyboard-heavy anthems, apart from a token couple of mid-tempo songs.
The two-CD, 23-track journey through the life of the controversial, 16th-century prophet “Nostradamus” shifted 42,000 copies in the United States in its first week of release to debut at No. 11. At the time, this was the band’s highest-ever chart position in the U.S. In Canada, the CD opened at position No. 9 after moving close to 4,000 units.
In a 2020 interview with The Flying V Documentary TV Channel, original PRIEST guitarist K.K. Downing said about “Nostradamus”: “A lot of people probably don’t understand or quite get ‘Nostradamus’, but it was great for us — it was great for us to express and to exhibit what we could actually do as musicians. And also it was something original. And I love it.
“The downfall of ‘Nostradamus’ was probably the one thing that I actually thought, naively, was gonna be the best thing about ‘Nostradamus’, and that is the fact that I wanted to take people back to how it used to be,” he continued.
“Years ago, when you had a big concept album, like when I first got (THE JIMI HENDRIX EXPERIENCE‘s) ‘Electric Ladyland’, for example, we used to go in our bedroom, close the curtains, put the headphones on and just disappear into our world for however long it took to get through the album and just absorb it and just be at one with it. And I wanted people to experience ‘Nostradamus’ like that.”
Back in 2018, Downing described “Nostradamus” as “our chance to create something different in the music place that we don’t always go to. We have lots of great musicals, and we go into great, prestigious venues, like the Royal Albert Hall or Carnegie Hall — great theaters around the place,” he said. “To create something and not let everyone else have all of the spoils — ‘Phantom Of The Opera’ and ‘Cats’ and all of these musicals and stuff like that. Why can’t we, JUDAS PRIEST, put something that’s rock and metal into that musical and entertainment place?
“Okay, we might have been going off on a tangent, getting on the wrong track as far as everybody wanting a (classic-sounding) JUDAS PRIEST record, but looking at the bigger picture of broadening the scope and the horizons of what a rock and metal band can do, it’s an opportunity kind of missed through no fault of anyone’s except our own record company and management, or whatever, decisions,” he continued. “It wasn’t to be, and probably it was a good decision. But it’s a dream — it’s a dream for me. I often think about it.”
In a 2009 interview with PyroMusic.net, PRIEST singer Rob Halford also defended “Nostradamus”, saying: “For us in the band, it was just a wonderful opportunity to complete an idea that we’d had and we’d talked about for many, many years. Growing up as we did, there were a lot of those types of concept records around in the ’70s and we always wondered how we would tackle that kind of endeavor. So ‘Nostradamus’ turned out to be a real satisfying experience for us all.”