After the critical flops of Turbo and (especially) Ram it Down, Priest really had something to prove to metal fans. This album, originally released in 1990, also came off the back of their infamous court case. This album takes all the pent up aggression and frustration the band must have felt, and unleashes them in a sonic display of fury. This album is like a metal fist to the face, it will leave you breathless in it's sheer relentless energy. Priest ditched kiddy-fiddler Dave Holland and appointed the awesome Scott Travis to the drum stool. His amazing double bass drum work really propells the Priest sound to dizzying heights, as Tipton, Halford, and Downing fully embraced the trash/power metal influences in to their writing style. The album can really be summed up in the first 2 minutes of the title track, in which the Priest effectively deploy all their sonic WMDs to maximum effect - Scott's drumming, Glenn and KK's riffing and Rob's scream. What follows is an utterly relentless metal onslaught - look up the definition of "heavy metal" in an encycopedia and there should be a picture of Painkiller! The only respite comes in the introductions to some of the songs, and the classy, menacing "Touch of Evil", which is the only slower track on the album (but no less powerful). In fact, the only criticism I could raise for the album is that it is so uncompromising - if you prefer the light and shade of, say, British Steel or Killing Machine, this may not be what you are looking for (try Angel of Retribition instead for a modern Priest album). As an exercise in demolishing their critics and their own self doubts, this stands head and shoulders above the rest of the Priest catalogue.