Sound — 8
Unlike in 'Hello Master,' Priestess has gone more towards their progressive roots, and it is mostly all for the better. Priestess blends metal, hard rock, and even a tad of folk in this album, making for an album with great variety. This album features even more crunching guitar, pounding drums, and air-guitar-worthy moments than their previous release.
Lyrics — 9
The band opted to write more about topics of interest on this album, as opposed to real life ventures. Whether it be a song about Jack the Ripper (in Lady Killer), Werewolves (in Communicating Via Eyes) or a world apocalypse (in The Gem), Priestess used this album to show a more storytelling side of themselves. With all band members contributing to the lyric-writing portion of the songs, we see many different lyrical styles all throughout the album. Singer Mikey Heppner gives this album more of a rough edge than their previous album, yelling out lyrics at all the right times. He also shows that he has grown as a singer, as the vocals on this album are displayed with great power.
Overall Impression — 9
What I have heard most of Priestess is that they are a heavier, more modern Black Sabbath. However, I find that they have created their own sound, but still respecting their roots. Prior to the Fire is a step in the perfect direction for Priestess, and I find it to be almost a step up from Hello Master. What I love the most about this album: I can listen to it from beginning to end without have to skip a single song. I do not hate anything about the album, but I think some songs could have been made longer. If this album were to be lost, I would definitely pick up another copy.