Riding the wave of doom popularity that is sweeping the nation, but coming at the genre with their own, fresh sound, High Priestess are about to unleash their debut album on their home base of L.A. and the world. The record is filled with mysticism, psychedelia and catchy doom riffage. The band broke down the thoughts, concepts and musical inspirations behind the new album for New Noise in advance of its May 19 debut. You can also find a full stream of the album below.
Katie Gilchrest (vocals/guitar/organ): This song is like when you’re in an “in between state,” waking or sleeping, or life or death. I picture it as a woman on the edge of consciousness, hovering between a choice of life or death, and calling up the wisdom of a firefly to bring her out of suffering and lead her to the best path (death).
Mariana Fiel (bass): Also, the lyrics for “Despise” were originally meant for “Firefly,” but Katie stepped in with new lyrics and vocal arrangements for “Firefly” and delivered one of the best lines (in my opinion) on the album: “When I die don’t pray for me…”
Mariana: The riff was originally going for a sludge/noise side project, but then Megan [Mullins, drums] and Katie came along and we connected to it, so it became the brute force it is now.
Katie: Our only love song on the album.
Katie: Our newest and most lighthearted song. A banshee sings to a child, in the form of a nursery rhyme, that his parents are dead. At first, the only vocal we had for the song was a devastating Mariana scream, so we decided to name the song Banshee and the words morphed from there.
Take the Blame
Katie: This song was directly inspired from a domestic abuse case I read in the news from Portland, ME. It’s about how women always seem to be saddled with blame (from society as well as themselves) in the most terrible of cases, even if they are the victim.
Mother Forgive Me
Katie: In a post-apocalyptic world, humankind asks Mother Earth for forgiveness after destroying her with willful ignorance, a result of western religious dogma.
Mariana: Our momss were very excited about this song until they realized it was not about them.
Katie: Our first song ever written that came out of a long jam. The words are about a demon that beckons a young woman in the dead of night to dive off of the Earth and travel with him through the darkness of space to another world. She is seduced by the painless night, which she does not know is just an illusion. She travels too far, where she finds not only a dead world, but her death as well. An allegory for addiction, overdose and dying.
High Priestess tour dates:
May 28 Portland, OR Tonic Lounge
May 29 Seattle, WA Funhouse
May 30 Vancouver, BC Astoria
May 31 Calgary, AB Palamino
June 1 Edmonton, AB Temple
June 2 Alberta, BC Vantopia Fest
June 3 SikSika, AB Siksika Community Centre
June 4 Kalispell, MT Old School Records