As Pierce The Veil gears up for the release of its fourth album, some are predicting big things for the band, which has enjoyed steady and substantial growth in its popularity - as evidenced by Saturday’s sold-out show co-headlining with Sleeping With Sirens at the House of Blues in North Myrtle Beach.
The band’s third album, 2012’s “Collide with the Sky,” debuted at No. 12 on Billboard magazine’s all-genre Top 200 album chart – an impressive achievement at a time when hard rock bands have struggled to sell albums and reach the high end of the charts.
Coupled with the considerable praise Pierce The Veil has received for its ability to craft songs that combine the fierceness of hardcore and metal with the songcraft and melodicism of pop, this has some predicting that the fourth album could thrust the band into the mainstream and major popularity.
Pierce The Veil bassist Jaime Preciado says the group knows there are expectations, but has done its best to focus on a more fundamental goal.
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“I know a lot of people are saying how are you planning on topping the last album you guys did?” Preciado said during a mid-October phone interview. “And for us, it’s never been about topping anything. It’s about writing and getting better individually and also in a group. You want to become a better songwriter, a better singer, a better musician, a better everything.”
The goal of being the best band it can be has translates to virtually every facet of what Pierce The Veil does.
For instance, as Preciado explained, on its fall tour, Pierce The Veil will continue trying to give fans the biggest and best shows its finances and imaginations allow.
“We try to make the show as big as possible,” he said. “We also like to push ourselves, whether it’s with production, with lights, with stage production set-ups, confetti -- we’ve had confetti in the past. Things like that just to make the show pop a little bit more because we used to go to shows all the time and those were the things we remembered.”
The fall tour precedes the planned early 2015 release of the group’s fourth studio album.
The return to touring comes after Pierce The Veil spent most of this year working on the next album – all in an effort to make the best album possible at this point in its career.
“We definitely take our time. We’re not the fastest writers on earth, and we definitely take advantage of it,” Preciado said. “I know sometimes people get a little impatient with us, but it seemed to work out OK. So we’re going to keep doing that. We don’t try to rush anything.”
The luxury of time is something the group didn’t have the first time the current four-man lineup did an album. Pierce The Veil actually started out as a duo of brothers Vic Fuentes (vocals/guitar) and Mike Fuentes (drums), and they recorded the 2007 debut album, “A Flair for the Dramatic,” themselves.
Then Preciado and lead guitarist Tony Perry came aboard to complete the lineup and tour behind the debut. When it was time to get to work on a second album, the band found itself in a time crunch. Roughly half of the songs were written when the band arrived at the studio. Things went down to the wire, and the group rushed to finish the instrumental tracks for the songs over the final few days before its studio time was up. Pierce The Veil was literally taking its gear out of the studio while the band that had the studio booked next loaded in its equipment.
The vocals for that 2010 album, “Selfish Machines,” had to get done at a home studio afterward, completing the overdue album.
Things were far more orderly with the yet-to-be-titled fourth album. The group spent the early months of 2014 working through ideas for songs and getting a handle on the material.
Then, as summer headed toward fall, Pierce The Veil headed to Long Island, where producer Dan Korneff (who also co-produced “Collide with the Sky”) built a new studio. Over the next three months, the group did pre-production to nail down the songs and then recorded the fourth album.
The group, obviously, put considerable effort into the new album. But Preciado – just as he didn’t want to make any predictions of impending stardom for Pierce The Veil – didn’t promise anything about the fourth album other than confirming that he and his bandmates gave it their best shot.
“I think it’s going to be a Pierce The Veil record,” he said. “ It’s still going to have its heavy parts. It’s still going to have its poppy parts. It’s going to have its fast stuff. We always incorporate everything. We want to make a full record, you know. And I think we did that. I think it will be just the newest Pierce The Veil album, where we’re at now, where we were at when we were making it.”