With a name like PILE OF PRIESTS I juast had to interview them. All questions answered by Evan Salvador (Lead Guitar, Vocals. Anders Ekdahl ©2020
How hard was it to come up with a band name and how does the name fit the music?
-We had gone through one or 2 other names in the beginning, but ultimately decided on Pile of Priests. The name fits our anti-religious lyrical themes and makes for a great acronym (POP, or “father”).
What was it that made you want to be in a band in the first place?
-Music is probably the biggest and most important part of our lives, we had the drive to learn how to play an instrument and create something of our own.
As I am no musician I have no idea how it works, but how do you make your own music based on what influences you? What parts do you pick?
-Initially we were going for a mix between thrash and death metal, which really had a lot to do with Sean Bartholomew’s drumming style (our first drummer). The vocals have always been in death metal style, they were a little lighter and grittier in the beginning but have now evolved into deep/dark growls. We have gradually moved away from the thrash sound into more melodic and progressive styles, this came about after Sean’s departure. We believe we have moved fully into a progressive metal genre with our new album. We were influenced by rad musicians and wanted to continue creating music in the style that we loved and put our touch on it.
When you are in a band does it feel like you are a part of a worldwide movement?
-Yes, in the sense that we are a part of the worldwide metal community. Metal has always been a movement and it’s own culture, I feel our connection with fellow metalheads is stronger than the bonds that fans of other music genres have.
How important is it that you look the part in promo shots and stuff? How important is the graphic side of the band?
-To be aesthetically pleasing with a visual representation of our music, band photography is very important. On the other hand, lots of bands take the non-serious silly side of it, which also has it’s appeal, depending on the image you want to portray. Professional graphics is also very important if you take your band seriously.
What would you say influences your lyrics? How important are they?
-Most of the time, I will choose a topic that I wish to shed light upon. Our lyrical themes are typically based on the fallacies of religion but I also write songs that deal with the struggles of the human condition. The new album differs from this because it’s a concept album for a fictional story I wrote, but while it still touches on a real message through the fantasy scenarios. The lyrics are important and meaningful, maybe not so much before our debut album, “Void To Enlightenment.,” but certainly afterward I took a more serious approach instead of gory nonsense with no depth.
Is the album as relevant today as it was in the 70s and 80s? Is digital killing the album?
-The vinyl record has made a massive comeback, CDs however are dying off, even though they are still the most versatile form of physical media. Streaming is killing the market for sales, sure it’s accessible to everyone now but not everyone is purchasing music anymore.
Where will the future of format end – digital verses physical verses whatever?
-Who knows! Because nobody expected the return of vinyl, but in my opinion I feel more comfortable with a lossless, tangible piece of music.
How much of a touring entity are you guys? What is a live experience with you like?
-Our bass player travels the USA for his career and is only home a handful of times a year. This limits our touring options, but when a good touring opportunity presents itself we do all we can to make it work. We like to keep our live shows fills with energy, we hate it when bands just stand there in a melancholy unenthusiastic manner. If the band is having fun on stage, it rubs off easily unto the crowd.
What lies in the future?
-Very good question! As nobody really knows with the pandemic situation the world is in right now, the music industry is suffering greatly. Do what you can to help support the artists you cherish, buy their merch, and stream their music, every little bit counts. Will we continue to make music? Probably.