Priests have announced their new album, The Seduction Of Kansas, alongside a massive world tour and a video for the title track. What is at stake in the seduction of Kansas? Like a gavel or hammer, the question rattles across the second LP from the Washington, D.C. rock iconoclasts. The album is set for release on 5th April via their own Sister Polygon Records.

Entering their eighth year as a band, Priests drummer Daniele Daniele, vocalist Katie Alice Greer, and guitarist G.L. Jaguar remain an inspired anomaly in modern music. A band on its own label jolting the greater music world with early releases by Downtown Boys, Snail Mail, Sneaks, and Gauche, they are living proof that it is still possible to work on one’s own terms, to collectively cultivate one’s own world.

Priests enlisted two primary collaborators in writing, arranging, and recording The Seduction of Kansas. After playing cello, mellotron, and lap steel on Nothing Feels Natural, multi-instrumentalist Janel Leppin returned to breathe air into Priests’ demos, serving as primary bassist and a fourth songwriting collaborator on The Seduction of KansasThe band also found a kindred spirit in producer John Congleton , recording for two weeks at his Elmwood Studio in Dallas. It marked the band’s first time opening up their creative work to collaborate with someone outside of their DC-based community. Priests found a third collaborator in bassist Alexandra Tyson, who has also joined the touring band. The songwriting process found the group once again analyzing the textures and scopes of albums as aggressive as they are introspective, like Massive Attack’s Mezzanine, Portishead’s Third, and Nine Inch Nails’ Downward Spiral.

The first single, is Priests’ purest pop song to date. It is dark and glittering—though there is still something fantastically off about it, decadent and uneasy at once. As journalist Thomas Frank explored in 2004’s What’s the Matter With Kansas?, the ideological sway of Kansas has often predicted the direction in which the U.S. will move, whether leaning socialist in the 1800s or going staunchly conservative in the 1980s.


Illustrating Kansas’ potent place in thier national imagination, as well as “a chorus of whoever is trying to persuade the social consciousness of Kansas”, Greer sings brilliantly of a “bloodthirsty cherub choir” in a cornfield, of “a drawn out charismatic parody of what a country through it used to be,” beckoning that “I’m the one who loves you.” The song does what Priests do best: They make us think, stir us with complexity. As for “seduction,” the word has long evoked pleasure, sex, but it can become propaganda, a tactic of manipulation, a ploy in the politics of persuasion. “There’s something sinister about the idea of seducing a whole state,” says drummer Daniele Daniele. “You’re clearly up to something. Why would you do it?” The title, like Priests, is a moving target, probing questions about the realities and mythologies of America in 2019 without giving in to easy answers.

PRIESTS 2019 TOUR DATES 

March 8 – Savannah, GA @ Savannah Stopover Music Festival
March 9 – Birmingham, AL @ The Firehouse
March 11 – Fri. March 15 – Austin, TX @ SXSW
March 17 – Nashville, TN @ Exit / In
March 18 – Knoxville, TN @ The Pilot Light

April 15 – Philadelphia, PA @ Union Transfer
April 16 – Brooklyn, NY @ Elsewhere
April 18 – Cambridge, MA @ The Sinclair
April 19 – Montreal, QC @ Casa Del Popolo
April 20 – Toronto, ON @ The Garrison
April 21 – Detroit, MI @ El Club
April 22 – Chicago, IL @ Lincoln Hall
April 25 – Madison, WI @ High Noon Saloon
April 26 – Minneapolis, MN @ 7th Street Entry
April 27 – Omaha, NE @ Reverb
April 28 – Des Moines, IA @ Vaudeville Mews
April 30 – Bloomington, IN @ The Bishop

May 1 – Columbus, OH @ Ace of Cups
May 11 – Brighton, UK @ The Great Escape
May 12 – Bristol, UK @ Rough Trade
May 13 – Manchester, UK @ YES (Pink Room)
May 14 – Glasgow, UK @ The Hug and Pint
May 15 – Leeds, UK @ Brudenell Social Club
May 16 – London, UK @ 100 Club
May 17 – Lille, FR @ Aeronef
May 18 – Paris, FR @ Supersonic
May 20 – Brussels, BE @ Botanique (Witloof Bar)
May 21 – Cologne, DE @ Bumann & Sohn
May 22 – Munich, DE @ Import/Export
May 23 – Zurich, CH @ Rote Fabrik
May 24 – Heidelberg, DE @ Queer Festival (Karlstorbahnhof)
May 25 – Amsterdam, NL @ London Calling
May 27 – Aarhus DK @ Tape
May 28 – Copenhagen, DK @ Loppen
May 29 – Berlin, DE @ Kantine am Berghain
May 30 – Hamburg, DE @ Hafenklag (Goldener Salon)
May 31 – Hilvarenbeek, NL @ Best Kept Secret Festival

June 15 – Washington, DC @ 9:30 Club
June 16 – Durham, NC @ The Pinhook
June 17 – Atlanta, GA @ Drunken Unicorn
June 18 – New Orleans, LA @ Gasa Gasa
June 20 – Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall
June 21 – Austin, TX @ Barracuda
June 22 – Dallas, TX @ Club Dada
June 24 – Albuquerque, NM @ Sister
June 25 – Phoenix, AZ @ Valley Bar
June 26 – San Diego, CA @ Soda Bar
June 27 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom
June 29 – Oakland, CA @ Starline Social Club

July 1 – Portland, OR @ Polaris Hall
July 2 – Vancouver, BC @ The Bitmore
July 3 – Seattle, WA @ Neumos
July 6 – Salt Lake City, UT @ Kilby Court
July 7 – Denver, CO @ Lost Lake
July 9 – Kansas City, MO @ The Record Bar
July 10 – St. Louis, MO @ Off Broadway