Priest, Body Machine – Album Review

If you're willing to open your mind and your sense to Priest then you'll love this. If you're closed and narrow minded and think rock and metal ceased to...

Label: Cleopatra Records

Genre: Dark Synth Wave \ Industrial \ EDM

Release date: July 15 2022

Members: 

Vocalist Mercury,

Keyboardist Salt,

Programmer/ keyboardist Sulfur

Track list:
1. A Signal In The Noise
2. Ghost Writer
3. Hell Awaits
4. Phantom Pain
5. Blacklisted
6. Perfect Body Machine
7. Techno Girl
8. Crystalline Lace
9. Nightcrawler
10. Keep On Burning

Dark synth wave prophets Priest, featuring former members of GHOST, released their highly anticipated new album ‘Body Machine’ this week (15 July).

Already set to be one of this year’s most intensely anticipated releases, the album, which consists of three former members from the Grammy-award winning metal act GHOST, namely vocalist Mercury, keyboardist Salt and programmer/ keyboardist Sulfur.

The trio who rose to fame with their former outfit now bring to the table their own style and imagery which presents them as one of the most brilliantly creative and diabolically catchy electronic acts to come along in years.

 
The album’s singles, ‘A Signal In The Noise’, ‘Techno Girl’ and ‘Blacklisted’ have already been generating a major buzz across both the metal and electronic music worlds, leaving not only us (as reviewers) but the rock world in general, eager for the full length album.

Produced by Simon Söderberg, another GHOST alumni, Body Machine is the band’s third studio album and their first to be released in conjunction with U.S. indie label juggernaut Cleopatra Records. The question on everyone’s lips though…. is it any good?

If you know the band or have heard the singles from this release then you’ll know that Priest sound nothing like their former outfit. Ghost may well be all about Satan (with tongue firmly planted in cheek) but Priest are more CyberPunk with imagery looking at body augmentation  wrapped into modern EDM driven industrial sounds.

Will Ghost fans love this? Does it actually matter? We’re 3 albums into a new and very different direction for the band and they will be picking up fans from other areas, they’ll be picking up fans of EDM and Industrial music all of whom probably don’t also follow Ghost. What about the actual Priest fans though? Those that have followed the band from their debut? Well, this time they are presented with something very different. The sound on Body Machine (if you’d not guessed from the videos for this) is way darker, grittier and altogether mysterious. It’s a new direction yes, but this is no Jazz Odyssey, this is Priest at their most majestic.

A Signal In The Noise, one of the lead singles prior to the album release, gets the ball rolling and delivers electronic synths that anyone with a love of the 80s will feel right at home with. The video is above, have a listen and make up your own mind but this is the music that I hope will propel them into the big time in the coming years.

 
If you then check out the above song Techno Girl, you’ll get a sense of just how varied the band can be at this bouncing dance floor filler. It’s here where Priest really excel and suggest that the mix of ideas coming out of the band have really used the perfect melting pot to blend everything together. They double up again with Ghost Writer which maintains that dancefloor feel and frankly keeps my feet moving whilst writing this review.

I can’t say I know or follow all of the nuances as far as EDM bodies of work are concerned. Heck, it’s bad enough trying to classify rock albums in the various genres and acronyms that exist. I’m sure, well, positive in fact, that Body Machine covers quite a few genres here but for the sake of sanity I’m not going to try and work them out. The upshot is ‘variety’ and they deliver that in spades.

Of genre splitting music “are they rock” “are they dance” “are they industrial” would normally have lovers of each giving the band a hard pass because they’re not open to new things. Thankfully Priest embrace all, accept all and deliver on all fronts. 

If you’re willing to open your mind and your sense to Priest then you’ll love this. If you’re closed and narrow minded and think rock and metal ceased to deliver after 1983, give up, go home and never darken my path again you sanctimonious old farts!

Embrace the new, listen to Priest, there’s a new sound in town. 

Rating: 9/10

Reviewed by: Adrian Hextall

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Priest support Combichrist on their upcoming tour. Ticket and venue details below: 

https://www.ticketmaster.co.uk/combichrist-tickets/artist/1113108

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