Credit: Michael Becker/FOX Photo: Judas Priest and James Durbin Team up on May 25, 2011

For American Idol fans, the name James Durbin is synonymous with heavy metal. He repped the genre at every opportunity during his run on Season 10 and delivered some of the most high-note-hitting, fist-pumping Idol performances in recent years. From the sound of it, the world of metal loves James right back. The rocker got a ringing endorsement from a member of the seminal metal band Judas Priest, who performed on AI thanks to James’s fandom.

“It was a whirlwind!” said bassist Ian Hill in a recent interview with RoadrunnerRecords.com. “The lad James [Durbin] — we owe him a debt of gratitude for bringing heavy metal to the mass media. For that reason it was something we couldn't turn down. [The Idol audience] may not necessarily associate it directly with the music, but everyone knew the name, so it wasn't a cold audience. It was fun; we had a great reception!”

We guess we won’t laugh when a Season 11 contestant brings it with the polka music.

Source: RoadrunnerRecords.com