Priestess is a Canadian rock band formed by singer/guitarist Mikey Heppner in Montreal, Quebec in 2003. Since its inception it has featured Heppner, singer/guitarist Dan Watchorn, singer/drummer Vince Nudo, and bassist Mike Dyball. Priestess were considered one of the most important bands in the early millennial “retro rock” movement, although they denied intentionally attempting to emulate the sounds of classic rock bands such as Black Sabbath and AC/DC, whom they idolized and to whom they were frequently compared.
Priestess was established in the early 2000s after all but one of the members of punk band the Dropouts left the band. The sole remaining member, Heppner, sought new bandmates after changing the group’s sound, and after a name change they released their first album, Hello Master, on independent record label Indica in 2005. Initially only released in Canada, the album was noticed and released by RCA Records internationally the following year, and the single “Lay Down” brought the band much success after being included in the popular video game Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock. RCA disliked Prior to the Fire, the result of the group’s attempt at a second album, as the label feared its progressive rock-influenced sound would not be marketable; the band subsequently left the label and the album’s serially-delayed 2009 release occurred in Canada on Indica, followed by an international 2010 release on independent label Tee Pee Records.
2012 would have been the year for a new album, but such a release was canceled. Priestess have gone on hiatus and members have engaged in other projects for the time being.