According to Rob Halford, everything about Judas Priest is immersed in the title of their latest album, Invincible Shield.

The metal god himself was the guest on Full Metal Jackie's weekend radio show.

During the chat, Halford delved into the band's longevity, become the first metal group to release albums 50 years apart. But ever the hype man for metal, Halford says of the new record, "Here we are at this wonderful opportunity to show everybody again this great love affair that we have with metal throughout Invincible Shield."

The singer also dug into songwriting specifics, speaking about how previous albums inform the current release and discussing how even though there's a trio of writers in Priest, it eventually becomes a full band record when they work together.

Rob is also quick to point out the contributions of Glenn Tipton, who only sparingly appears live due to his battle with Parkinson's Disease, but has remained a creative force playing on records. "He's on fire on this record," says Halford of Tipton, stating that the guitarist's presence in the band is as strong as ever.

Check out more of the chat below.

It’s Full Metal Jackie, bringing you two full hours of metal each and every week on the show with us this week, the Metal. God, Rob Halford.

Hey Jackie. Hey everybody. It's so great to be with you once again talking about metal, talking about Priest, talking about everything that we love about this heavy metal world that we live in.

Well, we're here to celebrate the release of Invincible Shield and I have to say I was there at Power Trip when it was announced. It was so exciting. It was such a great show. And it's finally here. Invincible Shield.

Look at this band, over 50 years later, by the way, Rocka Rolla is 50 this year. Rocka Rolla, 1974, Invincible Shield 2024 - 19 studio albums connecting both of them. A band has played thousands of shows. A band has played to millions of metal fans all over the world. A band that was there from the beginning of the heavy metal scene. And here we are at this wonderful opportunity to show everybody again this great love affair that we have with metal throughout Invincible Shield.

Judas Priest, "Rocka Rolla"

READ MORE: Judas Priest Become First Metal Band to Release Albums 50 Years Apart

So we've got the record and we've got the spring U.S. tour kicking off next month. And Rob, personal change is inevitable throughout the various stages of life. What does Invincible Shield reflect about you that's different from the lyrics at the heart of albums like British Steel and Screaming for Vengeance?

I think everything about this band is immersed in this title. What is an Invincible Shield? I think Priest is the invincible shield of heavy metal without a shadow of a doubt. We've been defending the faith of heavy metal forever, but to be at this point now where this band and the metal is invincible and we have the shield reference, which is you know, a reference of preservation, of survival, of also pushing forward and reinforcing everything that we love and breathe about the metal experience, It's just a great.

It's a title that expresses all of that. So this is just like a really fine tuned experience that Priest is displaying right now. We're so happy that the music has turned out so strongly and that each song, as we've always tried to do, is really showing you the best elements of what this band can achieve. At this moment, Judas Priest, Invincible Shield 2024.

Judas Priest, "Invincible Shield"

Let's go back to Firepower for a moment. Firepower - such a vibrant musical statement. What precedent do prior albums create when you approach what comes next?

Your prior records are very useful reference points that can also be a little bit of a distraction, and they can also create some obstacles if you don't really know how to take those textures and references and utilize them into the work that you're doing now.

Priest has been doing that since Rocka Rolla. I keep using that album as a reference, but it's true, cause after Rocka Rolla, you had Sad Wings of Destiny. You had a definitive break in the display of what this band was doing. It was enormous that the jump from Rocka Rolla to Sad Wings of Destiny, then moving all the way through the timeline of Priest with every album as a reference point that you can look back and listen to and be curious, be inquisitive and utilize some of those past songs from a different place.

Now, it's not about replication or re-imagining, but I think it really helps to kind of keep the broad spectrum of your achievements in place. And that sets up the feeling, "Okay, now we have to go to this point." Now we've done all this stuff. Now this new reference is over here. So all of this music that Priest is playing on Invincible Shield has all that essence. It's new and it's fresh, and it's this band as we exist, living and breathing metal in 2024.

Creatively Rob, Judas Priest has always been a three person collaborative. How has that synergy made you a better songwriter and lyricist, particularly in the case of this new album?

Chemistry is something that you and I have talked about multiple times, Jackie, and that is so important for any band in terms of the writing. I always feel you should try and encapsulate everybody's feelings and desires in what is the final display.

So what I mean by that is that even though we've had this great relationship - two guitar players and a singer from British Steel onwards that's made this really extraordinary array of songs happen - they're also connecting in this instance, for many times with Ian [Hill} and with Scott [Travis], this whole thing that you're pushing is from everybody in the band.

So even though the components and the songs on Invincible Shield come from the trio, there's no doubt that the references that Ian's making and that Scott's making complete the picture. These songs are completely created by everybody in Judas Priest. But it is something very special to us. And writing music, it ain't easy, not when you are dealing with all of the places that you've been to before. You have to work really hard to get the best results and we've never shied away from that. So writing is where it all starts. Everything happens after the writing. You've gotta really focus a thousand percent on your writing and then great things come from there forward.

Judas Priest, "Panic Attack"

Rob, the limitation of let's say Tony Iommi's fingertips famously gave Black Sabbath a distinct sound. How has Glenn Tipton adapting to Parkinson's disease actually taken the band in new creative directions?

Unbelievable. Thank you so much for referencing Glenn. We love Glenn. Everybody loves Glenn. He's so important. He's as important and his involvement in this band hasn't diminished in one way, shape or form.

Yes, the articulation when it comes to some guitar work has been passed over to Richie with Glenn's blessing and Glenn's encouragement and direction. Glenn's guitar playing is all over this album. It's remarkable that this man is still doing great things, considering what he has to work with every day of his life. This whole essence of not surrendering, not giving up, believing in yourself, fighting for everything that you live for, if that isn't the essence of Glenn Tipton and Heavy Metal, I don’t know what is.

He's on fire on this record and his writing and his performing and his place in Priest, he's as strong as it ever was.

Rob, when you joined Judas Priest, the Rolling Stones had only been at it for about 10 years and The Beatles were already disbanded. How does the expectation of a band's musical longevity recalculate every few years when the original assumption was that it probably wouldn't last very long?

Well, this is the joy of being in a rock and roll band. There is no guarantee, there are no guarantees of how long you'll be together. There are no guarantees of how much music you'll play, how many shows you'll do, because that's what rock and roll is about.

It's just chaos. You know, there are no rules and regulations. Things happen for the right reasons. Again, the chemistry, the structure of the life of your band is just so intertwined with so many of the possibilities that could come along, and take you to this place or that place. That's what I love about being in a band. You've got distinctive characters, distinctive people that are all bringing something separately to the table, but the end result can be very strong and potent.

So it's so cool that you reference those two bands. I I love them so much and they're so great. The Stones have just got this new Hackney Diamonds out, which is kicking butt and that Beatles song that was released not too long ago, how cool is that? That bands from those particular times in rock and roll are still vital and important and doing great things. And I'll put Priest into the equation 50 years later, this band is still doing important things in music.

Judas Priest, 'Invincible Shield'

Absolutely. And we are so excited for this new record Invincible Shield - out now. See the band on their spring U.S. tour kicking off next month. Rob, always such a pleasure to chat with you and I'm so excited for this upcoming tour. Good luck with everything to come this year.

Thank you Jackie. It's always a pleasure to speak with you guys and thanks for all the love and the support that you give for not only Priest, but for metal throughout the U.S. and the world. 'cause everybody listens to Jackie around the world. So yeah, let's keep keeping that metal faith alive and everybody get ready to check out some Invincible Shield.

Thanks to Rob Halford for the interview. Judas Priest's Invincible Shield is out now. You can also keep up with the band's touring, music and more through their website, Facebook, X, Instagram, YouTube and Spotify accounts. Find out where you can hear Full Metal Jackie's weekend radio show here.

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