Cop City/Chill Pillars on Creep Rock, Sexual Frustration, and Getting Hosed

Das Pillars new full length on Florida's Dying. 
For the second time in a row, the hands-up-and-down best rock 'n' roll record released in the United States of America was brewed in ... Palm Beach County?

Despite (or maybe as a direct result of) its blandly Floridian origins, Cop City/Chill Pillars -- a PBC band always comprised of guitarist Chris Jankow Jr., drummer Jordan Pettingill, and bassist Jimmy Bradshaw, along with a gang of revolving collaborators and contributors, including members of Weird Wives, The Jameses, and Universal Expansion -- prances on the cutting edge of blues-based composition like a daredevil tightrope walker who doesn't care about slipping off a cliff, and even kinda wants to take the dive.

With the release of Hosed -- both the group's second full-length and second release for Orlando label Florida's Dying -- the Pillars have transitioned out of its already-impressive primate-punk-shimmy mode and plunged -- face first, sans bungee -- into the realm of (brace yourself) hardcore psychedelia.

County Grind spoke with the band via conference call to gain further insight into the best new rock music being made in 2012.

County Grind: What does it mean to be "hosed"?
(Beavis and Butthead-esque chuckling)
Jimmy Bradshaw (Bass): It's, like, bad luck.
Jordan Pettingill (Drums): Those situations in life where you're like, "Man...I got hosed."

Can you give an example?
Jimmy: Being born.

Most, if not all of your vocals are in a gang/chant style. Who writes the lyrics?
Jordan: C.J.

C.J., are you the primary songwriter?
C.J. (Guitar): More so on the first album. On this album, they were written kinda fast. So we have one idea, usually, and then we plan to fit words into the rhythms we want to sing. The lyrics serve a purpose, but they're also kind of arbitrary.

The first time I saw you perform "Steady Wild," the "Just stand there/Don't do anything" chorus was really striking, especially when viewed as an address to the crowd. Were you inspired by immobile audiences when you wrote that song?
C.J.: I wasn't thinking about that at all. I thought it was a creepy way of talking to someone when you are being intimate with them and not getting, uh ...

Jordan: ... any feedback.
C.J.: Yeah.

Photo by Ian Witlen
Live at Propaganda in Lake Worth.

Your music has always been edgy, but there's a teeth-gritting quality to Hosed. Would you say there is more frustration in this record?
C.J.: Yeah, kind of. There's a lot of similarities to Held Hostage on Planet Chill. That one was frustrated too. But it was more insular. It kind of had an inside joke thing going on. I definitely play guitar a little different on this one, and the bass is a little more busy.

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