“Musically, we’ve parted company, really. I’m sure if I called him up and said, ‘You fancy coming down the pub,’ he’d say yes, I’m sure. I know he would. But I haven’t had any contact with him over the last couple of years because we’ve been so busy. But I think, musically, we’ve parted ways, really. Probably the less said, the better. I’ll get slated on Blabbermouth, probably, for saying anything. So I’ve gotta be careful. [Laughs]”
In a recent interview with “Full In Bloom,” Downing said that he never got a chance to even discuss the possibility of returning to PRIEST once Glenn Tipton made the decision to stop touring.
“Glenn decided to step down, and the minute he did, he passed the guitar to Andy, who was there, and he said, ‘You’ve got the job.’ So there was never an option for me… When Glenn stepped down, it would have been an option for me to step back in, because I was ready to do it, really, is what I think. I mean, Richie covers Glenn‘s parts now anyway.
“He even plays ‘Painkiller’ — Richie does — and does a great job of it. It would have made sense for me to step back in and take my role as someone who has a 40-year legacy of standing in that spot. If there was an option — if there was a remote option — that that could have been done, then those guys, for the sake of the fans, should really have asked the question, ‘Is it an option?’ But they didn’t. It’s sad that it came to that.”