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[Updated] First Listen: High Priestess Put the Power in Modern Psychedelic Doom-Drone Music

May 9, 2018 | by Jocelyn Hoppa

I always knew doom metal would find its rightful, steadfast place amongst both metal’s history but also its future. With a world gone mad, how could one not sink deep into the genres sludgy, slow expansiveness without irony? For me, listening to doom is essentially therapy at this point.

The one weird thing about being a female fan of doom metal is the lack of female-fronted doom bands. There are for sure some (Mount Salem, Subrosa, LA Witch, Windhand), but taken as a whole it's a fairly dude-heavy affair. Enter High Priestess, a female trio deftly throwing down on those crushing, meditative grooves fans of this sprawling metal genre go for.

Though they've only been a trio since 2016, inspired by the droning, ambient, heavy psychedelics of OM, High Priestess has garnered a following in that short amount of time. Featuring bassist Mariana Fiel, drummer Megan Mullins, and vocals/guitarist/organist Katie Gilchrest, their self-released, five-song demo of last summer created buzz throughout the L.A. underground, and now the band is set to release their first full-length, self-titled album via Ripple Music on May 18th.

For some context, High Priestess is a Major Arcana tarot card (the album cover plays off of this), and she is depicted sitting before the gate of great mystery, between darkness and light, the mediator of passage into the depth of reality, intuition, and the subconscious mind. As for the red pterodactyls shown here (an artist addition), symbolism would suggest an internal struggle against our instincts in order to free our soul. If that's not doom metal in a nutshell (reminder: often it's not only about death, destruction, and utter downfall, as the genre name might suggest), I don't know what is.

As for the first listen to album single "Take the Blame" you'll get six-plus minutes of heavy psych riffs via low-tune guitars, crashing symbols, and thick, palatial vocal harmonies. We look forward to hearing more.

Check out album single “Take the Blame”

[UPDATED] Here we are, hearing more. Today, Metal Injection got the goods on the band's latest single track release, the 10-minute mystical and meditative jam, "Firefly." Head over to the metal magazine's site to hear the track.

The band is currently touring the west coast and Canada, so if you're in these regions go check em out.

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