October 13, 2012


AwkwardSound was a bit taken aback earlier this week when one of the major tastemaking sites out there declared that recent BUZZSound alum METZ were "bringing post-hardcore back." With a scratch to the head and a quick search through the AS archives, it's not like it really went anywhere. Perhaps the more approp phrasing would have been "artsy" post-hardcore, if such a thing actually exists. While slamming guitars and beating drum kits into submission is the ultimate end goal of every post-hardcore band, some -- like METZ, their seminal predecessors Drive Like Jehu, the Jesus Lizard and Aughties favs the Blood Brothers or Death from Above 1979 -- put more thought into where their targets hit. Unwound did this even more so excellently back in the '90s, bringing their pounces to a torturous crawl, and while their ghost has laid rest since 2002, maybe there is some truth to a post-hardcore resurrection when you take listen to Boston's PILE. The band has been churning its way through the underground for a few years now, beginning its embyronic stages in 2007 as the lo-fi solo project of frontman Rick Maguire. As PILE's sound expanded into bigger and heavier directions, however, so did the line-up, ultimately with guitarist Matt Becker, drummer Kris Kruss and bassist Matt Connery completing its mutation into a quartet. Massachusetts' scene of grungy punks with a hunger for a hardcore appetizer isn't uncommon these days (see: BUZZSounds California X and Speedy Ortiz,) but what distinguishes PILE are the epic guitar outros and the grimy melodies entwined in tracks like "Prom Song" and "Bump a Grape" that are throwbacks to a time when you could turn on your favorite alt radio station in '96 and be completely obliterated in the eardrums by J Mascis or Rivers Cuomo. You'll soon be able to hear those and more when PILE releases their latest full-length, Dripping on October 23rd through Exploding In Sound Records. They'll also be joining Speedy Ortiz, Mr. Dream, SLEEPIES and YVETTE at this year's EISGT CMJ showcase, alongside endless touring to come including one date with -- who else? - METZ.

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