Tim “Ripper” Owens joined the heavy metal band Judas Priest in 1996. After a 7-year tenure with the band, the musician was replaced by the band’s current singer Rob Halford. Currently, he is a member of the former Judas Priest guitarist K.K. Downing‘s band, K.K.’s Priest.
Throughout his career with Priest, Ripper had released two studio albums. Those were the band’s thirteenth studio album, Jugulator, and the fourteenth studio album, Demolition. He had also appeared on the band’s two live albums, 1998’s ’98 Live Meltdown and 2003’s Live In London.
During a recent appearance on Rock Of Nations With Dave Kinchen podcast, the former Judas Priest singer has opened up about the state of heavy metal during his Priest-era. Saying that his time in Priest was not good during the late ’90s, the singer added that nobody was playing big shows at the time.
“I joined Judas Priest in one of the worst times of heavy metal ever,” he says. “’96, ’97 — my time in Judas Priest, it wasn’t good… It was a horrible time — nobody was playing big shows.”
Ex-Judas Priest Star Claims Heavy Metal Is Doing Great These Days
Later then, former Judas Priest singer mentioned how heavy metal has been going these days. Saying that he’s been doing better since the early 2000s, the singer added that the current state of heavy metal is great.
“But since the early 2000s on, it’s been way better,” the singer continues. “I make a living touring. Whether it’s small venues or not, I make a living playing heavy metal all over the world.
“And yeah, it’s great. We don’t have to be on [the top of the charts]. We do have bands that still help — Disturbed will get a song [played on the radio]. Any band that has a classic edge to it and ends up on the radio, I still love it.
“But we don’t have to be. We stay right here, man. We just float along. And metal’s doing great.”
Back in this-mid October, the singer had shared his honest opinion on Rob Halford’s voice. When he was asked whether he heard Judas Priest‘s latest album, Firepower, the musician said that he thought it was a great record.
“I heard it,” he comments. “I bought it on iTunes the day it came out… I thought it was refreshing. I thought it was a great record. It was different.
“It was nice they brought in some different producers and brought Tom back. The music was not normal Judas Priest to me.
“You could tell it was written by other people, not the classic guys. Glenn and Ken [K.K. Downing, guitar] are not there anymore.
“Rob sounded unbelievable. It’s funny ’cause singers go through periods where we don’t sound as good; I think I’m going through my period right now.
“Rob went through a period where he might not have sounded as good years and years ago, and people would talk about it. And now it’s come back again full – he’s full force, so it’s cool to listen to.”