Priory of Sion – S/T Review

I knew the name of the band was somehow known. A quick look at Wikipedia and I got this: The Prieuré de Sion, translated as Priory of Sion, was a fraternal organisation founded and dissolved in France in 1956 by Pierre Plantard in his failed attempt to create a prestigious neo-chivalric order. In the 1960s, Plantard began claiming that his self-styled order was the latest front for a secret society founded by crusading knight Godfrey of Bouillon, on Mount Zion in the Kingdom of Jerusalem in 1099, under the guise of the historical monastic order of the Abbey of Our Lady of Mount Zion. As a framework for his grandiose assertion of being both the Great Monarch prophesied by Nostradamus and a Merovingian pretender, Plantard further claimed the Priory of Sion was engaged in a centuries-long benevolent conspiracy to install a secret bloodline of the Merovingian dynasty on the thrones of France and the rest of Europe. To Plantard’s surprise, all of his claims were fused with the notion of a Jesus bloodline and popularised by the authors of the 1982 speculative nonfiction book “The Holy Blood and the Holy Grail,” whose conclusions would later be borrowed by Dan Brown for his 2003 mystery thriller novel “The Da Vinci Code.”

All those secret organizations from the distant – or not that distant – past are a rich inspiration to all Metal bands from whatever the kind they are. The more obscure, the more interesting they get. That’s kind of a rule in the Metal music world. I have no problem with that. Imagination and fantasy are alllowed features in the Metal world. There’s no way of denying it.

The album opens up with a cool and sweet piano passage in “Welcome to the Priory” full of guitar arpeggios as any Progressive Metal act. This leads to “Into Expanse” which has a nice pre-recorded vocals as if narrating the story of the song. By the way, the album is  a concept. The amazing thing about it is that all the songs  musically cover the idea of the concept story. Priory of Sion here don’t use the common approach to instrumental songs. In fact, they mix the approach of showing a main theme to a kind of free improvising during all the sing. Well, it works fine with a very consistent and cohesive act of all the band. The guitar shines, but everything else does too. That is what makes “Priory of Sion” a very good album. There are very good ideas in the album as the band shows in “The Solar Temple” where the guitar does a very interesting broken riff – a riff that isn’t plain, I mean.

The album may sound a little conventional to instrumental albums, however there are a few tricks that the band uses to make it a little less conventional. “Priory of Sion” is much more than a shredding instrumental album. Check it out.

Priory of Sion “Priory of Sion” was released on August 03rd via Man In The Telescope.

Track Listing:

  1. Welcome to the Priory
  2. Into Expanse
  3. The Grand Qabaal
  4. Leylines
  5. Priory of Sion
  6. The Solar Temple
  7. Quarantine [feat. Sophie Burrell & Kieran Johnston]
  8. Jonestown

Watch “Priory of Sion” official video here: