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Priest: Body Machine

You would be forgiven thinking you are walking into a custom party, perhaps on Halloween. You actually didn’t, but you just might be listening to the latest album by the synth/electronic trio Priest titled Body Machine. Bands and artists have presenting alter egos and alternate personalities on stage for decades, hello Peter Gabriel, so this is in no way unusual. I am sure the band’s outfits, all spikey leather and strange bird-beak head gear is all part of the experience, especially if you happen to catch the band live. They are a relatively recent band, forming around 2015 and heave released a couple of previous efforts, New Flesh (2017) and Cyberhead (2020), both of which I have not had the pleasure of listening to.

The music on Body Machine could be labeled as electronica, synth wave, house, techno, well you get the picture. The liberal use of electronics, synths, and pulsating beats recalls bands like Kraftwerk, Depeche Mode, and Pet Shop Boys (the one album I own I really like). Pulsating keyboards and shimmering synths have a Kraftwerk feel and the lead vocals have a deep, low-end delivery, meshing well with the electronic soundscape. Catchy melodies abound throughout the album. The hypnotic “Ghost Writer” revisits British New Wave of the ‘80s, with a cool breakdown showcasing a creative use of electronics. “Hell Awaits” has a catchy techno groove and in “Phantom Pain” a pulsating robotic dance groove is supplemented with catchy synths and Mercury’s dark vocal delivery, reminiscent of something the Sisters Of Mercy might have created. Included is a cool electronic/sound effect section that immediately had my attention. The dense and heavily processed “Blacklisted”, the infectious and fun “Perfect Body Machine”, and the dark moodiness of “Crystalline Lace” are more excellent tracks. The disc ends with the pure techno pop of “Keep On Burning”, an overtly catchy tune that has one of those melodies that sticks around for days.

Heavy on the groove and electronics, Body Machine will not be for everyone. However, anyone interested in electronic music that you can move to, this album will more than suffice. If you want a little pick me up, Body Machine may do just that. Recommended.

Band members:
Mercury (vocals, programming)
Salt (keyboards, keytar)
Sulfur (keyboards, programming)

Track Listing:
1. A Signal In The Noise (3:18)
2. Ghost Writer (3:40)
3. Hell Awaits (3:06)
4. Phantom Pain (4:00)
5. Blacklisted (3:17)
6. Perfect Body Machine (3:32)
7. Techno Girl (3:01)
8. Crystalline Lace (3:00)
9. Nightcrawler (3:44)
10. Keep On Burning (4:22)

Added: January 24th 2023
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band @ Bandcamp
Hits: 858
Language: english

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