There’s a sort of urgency present in D.C. punks Priests’ first full-length Nothing Feels Natural and it shifted to the stage pretty damn well. Take last weekend at Allston’s Great Scott as a prime example. Priests played a fiery show with Snail Mail and locals Halfsour, and even included a pint-sized set beforehand for those under 21. Priests singer Katie Alice Greer’s syrupy vocals practically melted over the surf-rock vibe radiating from the band, making it impossible not to dance. Her presence felt unabashed but her vocals felt fiercely dedicated.
Greer showed her appreciation to the crowd for coming out to party while the world is falling apart. Many Priests songs felt directed at the current state of affairs, but Nothing Feels Natural was underway long before election day. Priests just have a natural tendency to expose the inconsistencies and lies accumulating up in our government. It gave Great Scott attendees a safe space to decompress after the latest White House antics.
Greer started the night slow and steady with a few tracks off the new release, building up a soft, slow energy before ripping into “Right Wing,” from their EP Bodies and Control and Money and Power. Priests’ spirit only escalated from there. Greer aggressively humped the mic stand as she belted “And Breeding,” sharing the spotlight with a screaming, front-row fan who joined in on the song. After crooning the last line “Barack Obama has killed something in me/ and I’m gonna get him for it,” Greer modified the lyrics to throw in a not-so-subtle punch at our country’s fearless leader, making Great Scott go absolutely bananas.
Towards the end of the night, Greer breaks into a huge grin, watching Great Scott bounce and chant to Priests politically-charged set. The punk crew end with fan favorite “Doctor,” bid goodnight, and immediately end the show without so much as an inkling of an encore. But somehow, that felt right.
THE GIST: Priests represent the anthem this country needs to hear right now. Their poetic chants, growling vocals, and surf rock vibe are almost as addictive as watching them perform.