Galeria Zé dos Bois

PILE ©Adam Parshall


In American indie-rock there are several examples of bands that have made their way through the ranks of persistence, stubbornness and the unshakeable belief of those who don’t want, can’t, can’t have another career. Think of Yo La Tengo – almost forty years into their career – who needed almost a decade to get to Matador and invite the world to look at them, to the past, and, since then, neither they nor we have stopped looking to the future. Pile are part of this category of stubborn good guys. Active since 2007, born in Boston, now living in Nashville, they have accepted the slow progression as a path to take, betting on continuous releases and tours, tours, tours. You could say it’s now starting to bear fruit that can be seen. “All Fiction” (Exploding In Sound), to be released in February, the new studio album in sixteen years, confirms the creative crescendo since “A Hairshirt of Purpose” (2017) and a good follow-up to “Songs Known Together, Alone” (2021), of those albums that came out during the pandemic that have both bleak and fascinating: mainly because it set the band reinterpreting already recorded and edited themes, stripping them down to the world with a filter that communicated the present.

A classic rock trio consisting of Rick Maguire (vocals, guitar), Alex Molini (bass) and Kris Kuss (drums), Pile are preparing to celebrate the release of “All Fiction” with a month-long tour of Europe. The hardest part is done, for the last decade they have been rehearsing to play their coming of age record, the one where they fine-tune the punk/indie skeleton of the first albums, with the unfinished song idea of “Songs Known Together, Alone” and a willingness to experiment with configurations and sounds that are beyond the classic formatting of the rock trio. The vigour and power of pulling out 3 / 4 minute pearls is still all there. Now it just blossoms to various sides. The Pile’s moment is here. AS


Born in 2018, EVACIGANA practice an exciting and colorful mix of alternative rock, pop, and effervescent post-hardcore (like the one made at the turn of the millennium), full of ear hooks, zig-zagging riffs and strong sonic contrasts. The Lisbon band has, so far, “EVACIGANA”, a self-titled demo released in 2019 and produced by themselves and “Fortuna”, their first EP, produced and mixed by Nuno Monteiro (Monday, Memória de Peixe, Filho da Mãe), and released in 2020, which led them to perform in venues like Bang Venue, Texas Bar, Side B and SHE, in festivals like Emergente and guaranteed them a place on the compilation Novos Talentos Fnac 2021. In early 2023, they debut with their first LP, “Fiasco”, produced by the band and mixed by Guilherme Gonçalves (Keep Razors Sharp, The Legendary Tigerman).

Fiasco – Unfavourable, disastrous or negative outcome.

After fortune, how do you deal with fiasco? In EVACIGANA’s case, you make the first album. The poles of the band’s sound widen. If in the past rock and pop were winked at, now the relationship is assumed and happy. But don’t think that one of the bride and groom has got too dressed up… The songs have been simplified but their gentleness and accessibility is well wrapped up in a rough and rough paper. Take, for example, the vertiginous beginning of “Dobra”, the theme that opens the album. An epileptic clash of guitars and drums, in a punk riff that drags us wildly and implodes in a soothing shoegaze verse, until it turns into a catchy, sticky chorus that insists on taking off. By the time we try to take a breath, the riff is back and we’re pulled back frantically, still whistling the chorus. In contrast, “Anáguas”, the first single from the album, is a sweet and simple song. The bass and drums glued and pulsating, the shimmering guitars, in a permanent game of spaces, and the two fragile voices, guiding the melodies to a kaleidoscopic peak of euphoria. It’s in the middle of these contradictions and apparent discomfort that throughout the ten songs that make up “Fiasco”, EVACIGANA continue to further enhance their peculiar identity and colorful sound palette.

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