A potent mix of various rock styles from a young quartet that isn’t afraid to go against the grain
You could, perhaps, put it down to youthful exuberance, but Italy’s The Pier have little regard for rules or convention. Formed by three childhood friends – Gabriele Terlizzi, Davide Pasculli and Danilo De Candia – as a high school band in 2013, they’ve defiantly followed their own path ever since, influenced by whatever they thought sounded great. It’s a process that’s worked out well too; their self-titled debut, released in 2016 while the trio was still at school, turned plenty of heads, but its last year’s Dead Reckoning that saw them attract Europe-wide acclaim, not to mention festival slots at the likes of Reeperbahn, Waves Vienna, and Sziget.
Composed by a scuzzy, wild, potent mix of styles, a lot is going on in their music. “Indie math rock” is a common description, but while there’s plenty of atypical rhythmic structures, angular melodies, and odd time signatures, there’s also lots of post-rock and post-punk too. Some tracks, such as “It Will Work”, bubble along with on a righteous fury, while the soaring, widescreen “Sheen” has a magnificence all of its own. “Sleep” even manages some quiet introspection and mournful sax.
Their punkish edge and powerful energy are most visible live, qualities that’ve been beefed up by the addition of a second guitarist, Giovanni Lisena, who joined at the beginning of this year. Eurosonic in January is the next step and one that should see them launched around Europe anew. They’ve come a long way since they were kids, and there’s no reason to doubt that the musical ambitions they harboured back then are about to be realized.