Interview: Priest talks about their new album and the AI revolution

Priest’s new album Dark Pulse arrives on May 31.


Swedish synthpop band Priest is one of the hardest working acts in the dark music scene. You can get more done when you’re cybernetically enhanced.

They’ve just completed another mammoth tour of the U.S. that concluded with a headlining set at New Jersey’s Dark Force Fest. Yet somehow they’ve found time to record their fourth album, which arrives at the end of the month.

The aptly named Dark Pulse takes Priest into darker territory. We’ve already heard three singles—”Burning Love,” “Just a Game,” and the recently released “Black Venom”—that hint at gloomier, bone-shaking club sounds.

Dark Pulse drops on May 31. I reached out to Priest to find out more about the new album and their busy schedule. Here’s what they told me.

It seems like you’ve been touring nonstop since Body Machine. How did you find time to write and record a new album?

We had some tunes for Dark Pulse already in the making, and we took the little time we had back at home to finish them up. It was extremely stressful to do 116 shows and all the traveling at the same time as we did this. On top of that, we manage both the band’s mail, social media, and record label.

We try our best, but it’s still hard to keep up with everything at the same time that you make sure the records we make is of the highest quality possible. We’re very proud with the result.

Priest’s sound mutates a bit with every album. What can we expect from Dark Pulse?

It’s a bit more dancey and dark—both playful and feverish, both beat driven and melodic. The lyrics are a bit more daring than our previous releases, but I think Dark Pulse is our best work to date. I hope you will too!

Is there a particular song on Dark Pulse that most captures the spirit of who Priest is right now? Or one that you love the most?

I like all of them in different ways, but I’m particularly excited about what people will think of the upcoming single “Demon’s Call” and the closing track “Chaos Reigns.”

You’ve been touring the U.S. pretty extensively. Do you find that U.S. audiences are different from European? Any stories you want to share from the road?

U.S. audiences are very appreciative, and we love touring there! We had some of our best and craziest shows in the USA for sure!

One show that stood out was playing at the legendary Whisky a Go-Go in Hollywood. It was a great sound and practically packed.

You covered Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus” on the last tour and then released it as a single. Any other cover songs you’d like to do?

Yes, it was a job we did for a Cleopatra Records Depeche Mode-tribute release, and it was very fun to do!

This winter there will be a Gothmas (gothic x-mass compilation) release from them as well, and we have a track on there that’s called “Carol of the Bells,” which will be an instrumental cover.

One of the biggest topics in tech right now is AI and how it may impact music production and marketing. As a cyborg yourself, how do you feel about the incoming AI revolution?

I welcome it but use it wisely. Collaborate with it instead of thinking that it should do everything for you. Use it as a brainstorming device or to analyze your lyrics for example. It will give you other angles of your creative process and lead you into new territory.

It should be a symbiosis. If you let it do too much for you it will probably only generate generic stuff, and people will recognize that and you will be forgotten. The most important and unique part of creating is you.

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