Judas Priest’s ‘Turbo’: The Unofficial Videos

He's got another thing comin'

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Judas Priest’s Turbo turns 25 today. I’m not sure if that calls for a celebration or an egging. Metal orthodoxy says to egg, but damned if I don’t love this album like I love lots of things that are bad for me. If in 1986 you told me, “Mutt Lange-produced Def Leppard wrote the soundtrack to Top Gun“, pre-pubescent me, Kelly McGillis-inspired boner fresh in mind, would have said, “Sign me up – pronto”. Instead, I missed this record completely. I was too busy exploring teen angst with thrash and so on and so forth.

So I hold no nostalgia for Turbo. Instead, I observe it with the fascination I have for any object from the ’80s that’s survived to this day due to being made of plastic. Rob Halford with hair! Wearing Bon Jovi fringes! Singing to screaming, big-haired girls! I wish I could have misspent my youth on that. Instead, I’m misspending my adulthood on it now. If it seems like I write about a lot of geezer metal now, it’s because (a) I am a geezer, and (b) I missed a lot of this stuff the first time around. I’m going back and finding out that it was even more awesome than I thought.

As for actually talking about Turbo, my colleague Adrien Begrand wrote the book on it here, if there’s a book to be had on the subject. (Weirdest 33 1/3 book ever? Do it!) Meanwhile, I’m busy having a Turbo YouTube party. (Yes, I have no friends.) Here are alternate looks at some of the best worst music ever.

— Cosmo Lee

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TURBO: THE UNOFFICIAL VIDEOS

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“Parental Guidance” (live 1986)

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The opening riff is an amazingly blatant rip-off of Def Leppard’s “Photograph”. I could listen to riffs like this all day long. In fact, I do. How much time did K.K. Downing and Glenn Tipton spend practicing synchronized guitar waving? They’ve done it for literally decades, so I imagine that it’s an integral part of rehearsals, right after warmups and stretching. I call it “Twin Rock Warrior Pose”.

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“Turbo Lover” (live 1986)

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You only wish that your stage set looked like a giant slot machine that’s actually a robot with a fully-functional grabby arm. Also, “aviator sunglasses + wind machine + scandalously low neckline” is a pretty good look for K.K. Downing.

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“Turbo Lover (Hi-Octane Remix)” (featuring Coco Austin)

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You actually don’t need to see this video. That is, unless you want to hear a remix of “Turbo Lover” that doesn’t do much except make it a little worse. Also, if you want to see big butts and big breasts, you are in the right place.

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“Locked In” (official video)

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This is actually an official video. But no one knows it about since the “Turbo Lover” video is much more famous. It is further proof that every ’80s metal video was made by the same director. That director was obviously frustrated that he wasn’t good enough to make B-grade horror movies. But when he found out that the magic formula was to throw in dancing girls with big hair and an inexplicable short, fat guy – boy, did bands knock down his door.

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