Top 10 Cover Versions of Judas Priest Songs

Judas Priest is an iconic band and it takes guts and talent to cover their songs, especially attempting Halford vocals. Because it's not easy, I appreciate the bands that did Judas Priest covers - these covers may not be better than the originals but they are still very good renditions that keep the metal legacy alive and remembered.

I noticed that the bands didn't change the originals very much (if any). I guess it's because the bands wanted to pay a tribute to Judas Priest and not to prove they can do things better or something.

Some covers are very well known, some others are not but there are some good ones among them.
The Top Ten
1 Painkiller - Death

This is a well known Judas Priest cover (for a reason) and I don't need to explain much here.

2 Before the Dawn - Scheepers

A very soft breakup ballad covered by Ralf Scheepers, often dubbed Rob Halford Jr.
No doubt Halford was his vocal idol and inspiration.
Ralf puts so much love in this vocal performance that I think 'Before the Dawn' is probably his most favorite song of all time. Ralf did this cover in 2011 (at 46) but he still sounded so much like the young Rob Halford in 1978 (Rob was 27).

3 The Ripper - Mercyful Fate

Another well known version - I guess nobody is surprised this cover is so high, at #3. Halford and King Diamond have the craziest high notes ever. They both have vocal ranges of 4+ octaves.

4 Metal Gods - Primal Fear

Vocals from Ralf Scheepers again - no surprise, his voice and singing style sound close to Halford.
This song isn't very difficult but it's a metal anthem and Primal Fear played it very well. I love how Scheepers reminds of Halford.

5 Beyond the Realms of Death - Blind Guardian

Not many attempted Painkiller and Beyond The Realms Of Death - these 2 songs are difficult (for different reasons). Beyond The Realms Of Death is the most emotional JP song (about suicide) and judging by the other 2 covers I heard, the most difficult part is to deliver the emotions. Blind Guardian did it whereas the others just sang/ played notes.
Again, this isn't better than the original but I give the choruses to Hansi. No disrespect to Halford but especially Hansi's 2nd chorus is mindblowing (2:15). His emotion and power even scare - esp. on "Keep the world with all its sin".

6 Starbreaker - Starbreaker
7 Hell Bent for Leather - Annihilator

Guitars and drums are very good - Jeff Waters and Mike Mangini, respectively. Vox are OK but the guy is a thrash singer - not bad for thrash but not Halford of course. If you don't insist on hearing Halford type of vocals, this cover is pretty enjoyable.

8 Screaming for Vengeance - Iced Earth

I put Iced Earth covers relatively low because Judas Priest fans usually expect to hear some Halford-esque high notes but Matt Barlow voice is quite low for that - he's a standard baritone, not even a high baritone. However, he did his best to go as high as possible and I think he did a very good job, especially for a vocalist who sings far from his comfort zone.

9 Living After Midnight - Disturbed

This song is hard rock and is relatively easy but yeah, Disturbed did a good job.

10 Tyrant - Overkill
The Contenders
11 Dissident Aggressor - Slayer

This is better than the original. They really took this to the next level. Dave Lombardo definitely took the drumming to the next level. It makes the original sound like a cover.

12 Dreamer Deceiver - Steel Prophet
13 Never Satisfied - Armored Saint
14 The Ripper - Iced Earth

Again, a very good cover but what I said about their Screaming for Vengeance cover, is valid here, too. Obviously Iced Earth love Judas Priest very much so they even covered 2 songs. Matt Barlow is a hero - he didn't mind singing 2 songs that are not for his voice.

15 Electric Eye - Helloween

Andi Deris sings this song and not Michael Kiske as some of you may expect.

16 Grinder - Kreator
17 Saints in Hell - Fates Warning
18 Breaking the Law - Motörhead
19 Electric Eye - As I Lay Dying
20 Running Wild - Huntress
21 Dissident Aggressor - Halestorm
22 Metal Gods - Fozzy
23 Love Bites - Nevermore
24 The Sentinel - Heavens Gate

Super underrated cover, but definitely should be in the top 5, its in my top 2 right behind death's cover, but listen to this cover. it's faithful, and they also manage to play a kickass solo without forcing an exact duplicate ripped straight off of the album.

25 Breaking the Law - Arch Enemy
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