Posts Tagged ‘Green and Gray’

Just over a decade into beloved rock band Pile’s existence, something amazing happened for frontman Rick Maguire: Finally, after six albums that all drew more critical acclaim than their predecessors, while slowly reaching more and more listeners outside the national underground, Maguire was able to make his band a full-time pursuit. He didn’t necessarily expect to get here, and many of Pile’s contemporaries didn’t.

Shelving all day jobs and side gigs, Maguire says, “was definitely the objective from day one. I was totally cool with the idea of it not getting to that point,” he clarifies, “but I’m happy that it has.”

“Green and Gray”, Pile’s upcoming seventh album and their fourth for every garage rock fan’s favorite truly independent label, Exploding in Sound Records, is the band’s first release during Maguire’s full-time era. Across the LP’s nearly hour-long runtime, Maguire reflects on growing older—he was twenty-one when he self-released Pile’s 2007 debut album, Demonstration—and how he feels about committing so wholly to Pile at an age when some people leave music behind.

“When I was younger,” he says, “I was pretty well convinced that I was going to front Pile until I was physically unable to. And now I still feel that way, but it’s not something in my imagination anymore.” As a result, on Green and Gray he “can point to things more directly” about aging than on past albums, on which this topic was, at most, “addressed in broader strokes.”

“I [couldn’t] go forward trying to juggle a job [with music],” he says of going full-time. “I have to be mentally and physically available,” he continues, plus he “wanted to spend full days trying to write.” Even if focusing solely on Pile pushes Maguire into an especially vulnerable space—see his depiction of himself as a public figure “trying to convince everybody that I’m a worthy candidate for their time and attention” on the acidly sauntering “Your Performance,” or having a surgeon expose his insides to everyone on the manic “On a Bigger Screen”—he wouldn’t have it any other way. “It doesn’t come without its stressors,” Maguire says of being in a band and only being in a band,  “but I’m really grateful that I’m able to do this and that it’s able to sustain me.

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This record is powerful and different and I think about how one of my favorite bands is changing and still growing. There is a distance and darkness to this recording but it also makes me feel less alone. The strings add an exciting and beautiful element.

the Band:

Chappy Hull – guitar and background vocals
Kris Kuss – drums
Rick Maguire – guitar and vocals
Alex Molini – bass

Released May 3rd, 2019

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Pile’s seventh album and their fourth for every garage rock fan’s favorite truly independent label, Exploding in Sound, is the band’s first since Rick Maguire decided to make his band a full-time pursuit. Across the LP’s nearly hour-long runtime, Maguire reflects on growing older—he was twenty-one when he self-released Pile’s 2007 debut, Demonstration—and how he feels about committing so wholly to Pile at an age when some people leave music behind.

“Hair” by Pile from their upcoming LP, “Green and Gray” out May 3rd on Exploding in Sound Records.