My Pilot are a Dublin based outift built around the songs of Neil Dougan. The band first began as a Neil solo project. Neil wanted to form a band to play his songs live so recruited his brother Ross (guitar), Brian McElroy (drums & keyboards), (his brother-in-law) and a friend of Brian’s, Richie Averill (bass) and thus My Pilot was formed. What first piped my interest about the band was their self-styled genre of musical output. It’s always handy when a band will specify what music it plays. My Pilot specialise in the “death-folk-country-noise-pop blues”. Their music though suggests an even wider variety of influences.
From their formation in 2010, the group have been busy with their releases. In November 2010, the band put out for free their first ep “Spiders”. Admiringly as the members have full-time jobs, the ep was self-recorded and home produced. One might describe the songs here more as low-fi or even shoe-gaze rock. “Spiders” being a prime example. Led by a patient banjo lick, the song bubbles and fizes until the screaming coda.
Neil mentioned in an interview that both he and Ross are fans of Sparklehorse as well as listing Smog, Neil Young and Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy as influences. You can detect the impact of theses artists on the music of My Pilot on their second ep; “Hot Blood” released in September 2011. The influence of the nonchalant vocal style of Bill Callahan is evident. The melodies though seem to remind me of acts such as Mark Mulcahy and even the Flaming Lips. “Decesdants” is a powerfully rhythmic song full of fuzzy effects.
“Decesdants” also appears on the bands debut lp. Released last November, “For Winter” is where we come face to face with the death-folk-country-noise-pop blues. The album is bursting with songs of echoey dreamy lo-fi rock. The one exception is the title track which bristles with an edgy rhythm and a very accessible chorus. My Pilot are a band worth keeping an eye on, to see where they bring this genre next.
You can buy their album through Bandcamp, iTunes or for physical copies, try their webstore. More information can be found on the band at the Band’s website. You can also catch up with them on Facebook.
Photo: My Pilot/Facebook