With the amount of noise they’ve been making, it’s hard not to notice Priests. I know exactly when I noticed their noise, and that was years ago when I saw them on the Chris Gethard show. They were the musical guests for the Sleater-Kinney episode and I knew when I saw them that I had to keep an eye on them. Smart folks knew to do the same and for years everyone waited, wondering when they were going to make their next move. For a band that only had one EP out, the amount of buzz surrounding their follow-up was notable. It’s been years, but Priests followed through and are on tour promoting their powerful debut Nothing Feels Natural. With the album having just been released, it’s only fair to let the dust settle and allow for proper absorption before saying anything about it, but at this point I can only say that it’s turning into one of the most remarkable albums of the year.
A small crowd had gathered at Great Scott in Boston on a freezing night to catch Priests. This was a band undoubtedly on the rise, and whether they could handle it or not, all eyes were going to be on them for the time being. The buzz has been spreading on their live shows and Priests has a lot to prove at this point.
It’s strange, but their song list for the night was a little unexpected, and I was a little worried. Of course they were going to play a tracks off their new LP, but Priests chose to start with their slower songs and build up to the punk rock chaos most of us were expecting. Maybe they were trying to prove a point — they’re evolving as a band– but it was hard not to notice the band being vulnerable and a little uncomfortable in the beginning. But as they built momentum, for which their drummer Daniele Daniele (no, nota typo) is partly responsible, the band hit their stride and proceeded to do nothing short of impressing. The urgency of their music, the camaraderie with the crowd, the energy on stage was all apparent as the band powered through harder and harder songs, culminating with one of their greatest songs Doctor. Watching Priests surprise us then win us over, a band who was on their ascent with unlimited possibilities, everyone in attendance that night knew they were now part of something special.
If you’re a resident of Boston, a fan of punk rock, or music, or live shows and you weren’t there that night, then you fucked up.