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Judas Priest want Glasto slot

Halford insists British band should fly flag if metal is becoming acceptable in UK

Judas Priest frontman Rob Halford admits he had a "diva moment" when he heard Metallica were to headline Glastonbury.

And he hopes his band will be given the chance to follow James Hetfield and co onto the Pyramid Stage next year, after the thrash giants headed off protests and performed a successful show at Michael Eavis' festival last month.

Halford tells Halesowen News: "Metallica are our best friends – but I did have a diva moment when I heard. If people are finally going to accept metal, it should at least be British."

And he's admitted Priest had to face up to the reality of retirement before deciding they wanted to keep going instead, hiring guitarist Richie Faulkner for latest album Redeemer Of Souls after KK Downing left.

"It's always hard when a member leaves," Halford reflects. "KK's influence and stamp will always be on Judas Priest – he lives in this band still. Having said that, there's something about Richie's excitement, charisma and power that equals what KK had.

"Our tour was called Epitaph because we thought it was going to be the last thing we did. But we were in a different place then. I think you have to get close to the end of something to realise that you don't want it to stop."

He adds: "We didn't want it to be a finale – so I suppose this album is our first encore."

Priest this month confirmed a run of North American shows, although there's been no comment on the chance of appearances in the UK and Europe. Halford was recently caught up in a battle of quotes with Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson over the use of autocues on stage.

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