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Rocka Rolla Import

4.2 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, March 8, 1993
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Editorial Reviews

Reissued 1974 album. The Birmingham Metal gods' debut LP, originally released in 1974 by Guil Records, now has the addition of the 'Diamonds And Rust' single as a bonus track to give a total of 11 cuts that show the early years of this internationally successful five piece.

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. One For The Road
  2. Rocka Rolla
  3. Winter
  4. Deep Freeze
  5. Winter Retreat
  6. Chater
  7. Never Satisfied
  8. Run Of The Mill
  9. Dying To Meet You
  10. Caviar And Meths
  11. Diamonds And Rust


Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 8, 1993)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Repertoire
  • ASIN: B000025QMT
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,872 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Rocka Rolla was Judas Priest's debut LP released in 1974. It features the mainstays of the band Glenn Tipton, K.K. Downing, Ian Hill, and, of course, the legendary Rob Halford on vocals (he is credited as "Bob" Halford on the packaging for this release). It was John Hinch's turn on the musical drummer stools for this one. For fans of 1980s Priest, Rock Rolla is a mixed bag of classic rockers, soft ballads, catchy radio tracks, experimental riffs, long epic anthems, and short songs that run together. The overall sound demonstrates a definite Black Sabbath influence with darkness and depth. Rocka Rolla rocks, but it rocks in the classic 1970s hard rock sense, not in the adrenaline-pumping aggression of 1980s Priest masterpieces like Defenders of the Faith.

The debut begins with "One for the Road," a quintessential Black Sabbath style opener. It has a plodding beat but does pick up the tempo. "Rocka Rolla" is the most recognizable track on this album. A television performance for this song can be found on the DVD Electric Eye. "Rocka Rolla" is "hella killa" from the cool opening guitar riff to the addictive chorus. The next three tracks run together to give the impression of a long, epic piece. "Winter" (1:41) offers a quiet background intro that builds up into a dark, very Black Sabbath sounding track. At the drum solo it switches to "Deep Freeze" (1:20) so that, unless you are watching the CD track counter, you may not even realize the song has changed. It then moves into "Winter Retreat" (3:27) that begins with distorted, experimental guitar sounds with strange, dark sound effects (very Black Sabbath-like) then becomes a very pleasant song for the last minute. It is a laid-back relaxing number that is all too brief.
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Comment 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
i chose to do this review for several reasons. in your editorial views it
is stated this originaly was put out by guil records. though it seems to
be a bit picky i mention it because gull records would not sign priest do
to the fact they didnt think they would ever make it. a 2nd try by priest
was also denied and the band already thought of throwing in the towel.they practiced under a pub in birmingham england after it closed &
charged very little to play there. rob,ian,kk and glenn survived on beans
and crackers and slept there overnite until the pub would open. finally a
break thru of sorts. after 2 tries, gull gave them a shot. they recorded
rocka rolla and played on the " top of the pops " on bbc. ( pickup the
making of british steel where u can see them play rocka rolla, deciever,
and take on the world. U HAVE TO SEE THIS !!! although rocka rolla only
sold just over 1000 copies ( i have one ) gull gave them the okay to go
with their 2nd release "sad wings of destiny". when i first listened to it
i was blown away. its a masterpiece to me. albums that you can play all
the way thru without skipping songs is very very rare. although they still
struggled w/ gull they finally got picked up by columbia and the rest is history as all u priest fans know. the rocka rolla album had 2 interesting
things. one was that the cover of the album featured the top of a glass
bottle of pop with rocka rolla on top of the cap design. in the early
1980's, the company of coke or coke a cola told priest they had to remove
that design off the album because it compared to close to the top of a
bottle of coke. there is now a new design on that cover with an evilish
type of flying machine on it.
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By JG on May 10, 2005
An incredible record, even more so being a debut. This release shows more breadth of style than any other from JP. Very heavy at times, and very melodic (more so than any later release) at others. Rocka Rolla is steeped in the psychadelic 60s, while at the same time foreshadowing the modern heavy metal era. If I could have one JP record, this would be it.
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Format: Audio CD
Before Judas Priest became a metal institution, before the leather and spikes, there was Rocka Rolla, the 1974 debut from a band still carving their own sound. Rocka Rolla will no doubt shock a lot of Judas Priest fans who expect an earlier version of their metal classic Sad Wings of Destiny. In fact, Rocka Rolla barely qualifies as heavy metal at all. It is, however, a great, heavy, hard rock album with a lot in common with bands like Atomic Rooster, Budgie and of course Black Sabbath, whose producer Rodger Bain was used here.

You can still hear previews of the later Priest sound here, especially on the longer "Winter/Deep Freeze/Winter Retreat/Cheater" suite and "Dying to Meet You," but for the most part Rocka Rolla is a straightforward hard rocking affair. Tipton and Downing focus more on bluesy riffing and almost prog rock solos, and Halford rarely unleashes his higher-octave screams. It's still an excellent album, even if by Judas Priest standards it's like a wayward stepchild. I'm a big fan of the `70s rock sound, particularly what the Brits were doing, and by those standards Rocka Rolla is one of the very best.

If you're coming at this from strictly a metal perspective, or are expecting more of the "Hell Bent for Leather" Judas Priest style, you probably will be disappointed by Rocka Rolla. If you're a fan of `70s era hard rock though, Rocka Rolla is an absolute treasure, not to mention an illuminating look at the earliest days of one of the most influential bands in metal.

Edition Notes: There are a couple of different CD issues of Rocka Rolla out there.
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