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“I want to do what makes me feel like a kid: experimenting, having fun and trying to discover new things about this work,” says Pile’s Rick Maguire about All Fiction. It’s his band’s eighth record and one that finds the ambitious group assembling its most texturally complex material yet — despite the fraught inspiration underscoring its restive lyrics. Alongside the blistering drums and scorched-earth riffs that first galvanized Pile’s dedicated fanbase, the band has incorporated elegiac strings, mystifying vocal corrosions, and haunting synths.
For fifteen years, Pile’s evolving take on rock has earned the group one oft-repeated superlative: “your favorite band’s favorite band.” Ceaseless touring took its members from Boston’s basement circuit to international festivals, hitting loftier technical apexes with each new record. Maguire — the fastidious composer, evocative guitarist, and potent voice behind the solo-turned-punk project—gives musical body to his interior world in scream-along-able lyrics that skew surreal. Drummer Kris Kuss’s time-defying performances, layered over gnarled basslines, have garnered widespread acclaim.