Interview With Priestess - 13th June 2007
Photo Of Irritant © Copyright IrritantAnthony caught up with Priestess at Bristol Academy shortly before the band took to the stage supporting Megadeath.

Can you give me a brief history of the band for those who don't know you?
We got together about three and a half years ago, but me, Mike and Dan were in a band for a year before. We changed our name to Priestess from the Dropouts which was the name of our earlier band once Vince joined on the drums.

Why did you choose the name Priestess?
Umm, not a lot of heavy thought went into it, we just thought it was a cool word, plain and simple!

Who would u say are the influences on your band and musical style?
That would be every band we listen to, of impossible length to actually name. We all listen to different things, we're all music geeks really so it comes from everywhere. Personally, the bands that most influenced my songwriting would be those like Black Sabbath, Gentle Giant, Frank Zappa, Jethro Tull, The Melvins, a huge huge endless list really.

What was it like to write and record 'Hello Master'?
It was great, we're just 4 dudes from Montreal playing in a band for the hell of it and we took our time, played small club gigs in Montreal and it got to the point where we wanted to start taking it seriously and record an album and stuff. The recording was stressful, it took a long time, it wasnt a recording of us, it was like a track by track recording, and we were happy with the result.

How has it been received by the public and media?
Well, its been out in Canada since October 2005. So far in Canada, its gone down really well, both public wise and critic wise and the States too. The States is a lot harder to crack, cos theres so many bands and so much stuff going on. We still have a cult status amongst the public but its gone well with the critics since it was released in the States in June 2006, we've pretty much toured the States non- stop. (me) 'I've listened to it and enjoyed it greatly' (Mikey) Oh, thanks very much, its brand new over here.

Would u say u have any favourite tracks on the album?
Yeah, Lay Down and Living Like A Dog are probably my 2 favourite tracks on the album, just because they are really fun to play, but Two Kids as well.

What was it like to tour with a band like Mastodon?
It was awesome, I mean they came out like 5 years ago now and we've been diehard fans of theirs ever since. We met them like a year and a half ago, they came up to us at our shows and we became friends with them, then they invited us out on tour. It was really satisfying, in that a band that we love have got to quite a big stage and then got us to tour with them.

Any fun stories from that tour?
Every day was a fun story, its all kind of a blur. Those guys are crazy. They're awesome dudes and we just liked partied all the time. There isn't one specific notable event really, it was all just a whirlwind.

You played at Download, what was it like to play at the premier UK metal festival?
Yeah, it was really awesome. Ever since like Monsters of Rock at Donington, I've loved it and I'm sure Download is what the name was changed to and the legacy of Monsters of Rock is just awesome. All the bands that have headlined it in the past are like big heroes of ours, like Metallica. I have AC/DC at Donington videos, and you watch that video and see the big tyre in the background and the crowds going wild, and go like 'Fuck, thats the same place we're playing now' so it was really amazing.

Did you check out any bands yourself whilst there?
Sure, we checked out Megadeth, umm who else? Shadows Fall, who are friends of ours. Slayer as well, that was awesome.

Have you got plans for any more festivals this summer?
Unfortunately, I don't think we're going to be doing any more of the European festivals, but we have some festivals we're doing in Canada over the summer.

You also attended the Metal Hammer awards, what was that like?
Yeah, it was awesome. Like I said earlier, Black Sabbath are like gods to me, and I was as close as I am to u as I was to Tony Iommi, so that alone was like life changing. Also, we played a set at the after show party for the awards, the guys from Slayer were there, the guys from Machine Head and Napalm Death were there. We played a show for all these guys and it was a little humbling but awesome none the less.

How has the mini tour with Megadeth gone so far?
Really well, it was our first time in Dublin and our first time in Glasgow, and both times it was fucking awesome, as good as a reception as u can expect for a support band, just fucking awesome. Everyone in the crew and the band are cool as well, and we're just having a blast.

So have you visited Bristol before and what is your impression of the place?
Nah, this is the first time. We walked around and we found this restaurant called Vincenzo's which is the name of our drummer. It turned out that the owners were from the same small village in Italy that Vince's parents are from, which was weird so they ended up talking in Italian for like an hour and a half to each other.

What plans have u got after this mini tour finishes?
It hasnt been confirmed but we were told half an hour ago that we might be going to Milan with Queens of the Stone Age on Monday, but if not, we'll just head home and start work on the new record.

You've got a song to be released on the soundtrack to Grand Theft Auto 4. Are you excited and what song will it be?
Sure am, and we also have the song on Guitar Hero 3 which is pretty cool. Not sure which one will be on GTA but the one on Guitar Hero will definitely be Lay Down.

Do you notice a difference in the reception u get from Canada to the UK?
To be honest, its more of a city to city thing than a country thing. Like in Canada, we will get different receptions in different cities. But i can say that the fans in the UK are very passionate about their music and really get into the shows a lot.

What is the music scene like in Montreal at the moment?
Its great, really really cool, one of the best scenes in North America for sure. Tons of bands, tons of people heading out to see shows. Theres also a lot of camaraderie, lots of parties together and its just really really cool.

How do u see your band in 5 years time?
Making records and touring, I just hope that we can do that forever!

Final question, given the choice, would you rather be a bear or a tiger?
Oh, thats really tough, cos I love bears and I love tigers. Can i choose a type of bear? Cos i would go with a grizzly bear, they're just so insane and tough.

Interview By Anthony
 Band Members

Mikey Heppner (Vocals, Guitar)
Mike Dyball (Bass)
Vince Nudo (Vocals, Drums)
Dan Watchorn (Vocals, Guitar)
 Latest Releases
Priestess - Hello Mister
Release Date - 21st May 2007
1. I Am The Night Colour Me Black
2. Lay Down
3. Run Home
4. Two Kids
5. Talk To Her
6. Time Will Cut You Down
7. Everything That You Are
8. Shakes
9. Performance
10. Living Like A Dog
11. No Real Pain
12. Blood
 Band Related Links
Priestess Myspace
Priestess Official Site