Ram it Down
Theme: There’s war in the streets, baby, and you’d better be armed. Armed and fabulous, if you catch my drift.
Key lyric: “Bodies revvin’ in leather heaven in wonder…Lights are dimmin’ and heads are swimmin’ as thunder hits the stage.”
Bath House Barometer: 4 – Sure, it’s a fiery tune about the power of rock n’ roll, but armies of men rarely gather in one place without at least a few flesh feasts breaking out. As an opening track, it’s arguably Priest’s best, and it sets the tone for the endless throbbing to come.
Theme: Power chords set the heart to racing, leading to all kinds of violent sexual behavior. It’s clear to see that without the music turning our young into zombies, not a single man among us would be blasted into incontinence.
Key lyric: “An armour plated raging beast, that’s born of steel and leather…It will survive against all odds, stampeding on forever.”
Bath House Barometer: 7 – Hard cocks are eternal, and always on the prowl for fresh victims. There’s also talk of “therapeutic healing” that can’t help but act as a metaphor for ingesting a Halford protein shake.
Theme: Rob is waiting on his Harley, and you best not be late. It’s parked behind the tour bus, if you’re having trouble.
Key lyric: “I’m behind the wheel, throttle open wide…The gas tank’s full, do you want a ride…Drivin’ in the fast lane late at night…I can’t keep my eyes off your red tail light.”
Bath House Barometer: 9 – Consider the key lyric. “Throttle” has been code for “cavernous colon” in the gay underground since at least the late 1950’s, and a “full tank” harkens to Peter North’s unending stream of semenal fireworks. And whose ass wouldn’t be red after taking on the whole goddamn band?
Come and Get It
Theme: You are a masochist. You like to be beaten, strangled, and left for dead. But only after being given a fresh coat by Rob, K.K., Glenn, Ian, Dave, and at least a dozen grizzled roadies.
Key lyric: “Do you like it heavy, do you love it mean…Do you want it dirty, we don’t play it clean.”
Bath House Barometer: 8 – Only a fool could miss the subtext. Sex with men, while the natural order in a metal universe, can lead to blindness. But you’re still game. From being “hammered” to equating the male orgasm with “dynamite,” it’s all one can do to keep from being ravaged.
Hard as Iron
Theme: Jesus Christ on a cum rag, who needs a road map with a title like that?
Key lyric: “Hard as iron, sharp as steel…Stop for no man, you better beg and kneel.”
Bath House Barometer: 10 – Quite possible Priest’s most outlandish call to arms, there isn’t an S&M stone left unturned, and here, it’s likely that after being forced to chug cock, feel the pinch until blood pours from your ass, and accept orgasms that literally cause the ground to break open, you’re still not finished until this monster strangles you to death. And this guy’s immortal, so we’re all fucked.
Blood Red Skies
Theme: I’m innocent, so if you try and arrest me, I’ll wipe out the fucking planet.
Key lyric: “Felt the hand of justice…Telling wrong from right…Threw me out upon the street, in the middle of the night.”
Bath House Barometer: 2 – More a tale of the usual martyrdom than a sexual fantasy, though it’s still not clear whether wrecking the planet involves at least one rape-induced orgasm. Typically, the subject of a Priest song is being given the shaft, though he’s prepared to die if it means being spoken of with reverence in the years to come. Sounds like your average teenage assassin to me.
I’m a Rocker
Theme: Metal superstars are the ultimate rebels, doing whatever they want, whenever they want. No mention of contractual obligations to the record company, however.
Key lyric: “I’m a rocker, oh oh….Do as I feel, as I say…I’m a rocker, oh oh…And no one can take that away.”
Bath House Barometer: 2 – Being the least subtle band of all time, I doubt even JP intended this carte blanche attitude to include calling out random seat numbers and forcing the lucky audience members to come backstage and get raped. No, this is simply a rocker’s life; free and clear, nice and easy, and, apparently, the genetic predisposition to fist pump.
Johnny B. Goode
No self-respecting Priest fan even admits that this song was recorded. And don’t get me started on the movie with Anthony Michael Hall.
Love You to Death
Theme: Two interpretations circulate in the metal community. Either Rob is such a good lay that you happily die knowing it could never get better, or he broke into your bedroom (having already butchered mom and dad), tied you up, and pulverized shivering ass cheek until you expired. Not even hardened CSI investigators know what to make of it.
Key lyric: “I’m comin’ to the point, I can’t hold back…Then you ease off with your attack…You’re the best I’ve had, if you please…You never stop, you great big tease.”
Bath House Barometer: 8 – Only a gay man would sodomize you against your will and insist that you’ve “been the star of your own show.” Still, it’s fascinating that for a self-described cocksman of the most illustrious vintage, he’s constantly having to force people to take his cock. I haven’t heard from a willing participant since Stained Class.
Monsters of Rock
Theme: One of these days, the earth will split open, smoke and dirt will choke the sky, and a massive cock will devastate the landscape. That’s the dream, anyway.
Key lyric: “From the concrete jungle, the smoke, the dirt, the grime…Could not contain the hunger, it grew and grew in time.”
Bath House Barometer: 7 – Written post-AIDS, this is perhaps the final gasp for the penis, as it would from thereon be accused of nearly every sexual crime under the sun. As such, the song is more myth than reality; a fantasy about consequence-free male lust made flesh.