Pillar gearing up for “Confessions”- due late September
Dove and GRAMMY nominatees Pillar recently completed recording its sixth album, Confessions, set to release September 22. In a bold move by one of Christian music’s preeminent rock bands, Pillar reinvented its approach to songwriting and studio production, as well as half its line-up. The result: a rich, melodic, transparent yet hard-hitting project with weighty appeal.
While lead singer Rob Beckley and guitarist Noah Henson have been the band’s principal songwriters the past eight years, Confessions marks the first time the two of them have collaborated with writers outside the band. Confessions‘ production marks equally new territory. For all of Pillar’s previous hit albums, the band had teamed with brilliant producer Travis Wyrick (P.O.D., Superchick), this outing, however, Wyrick and other confidants suggested they go with versatile producer/songwriter Rob Graves (Red, Wavorly). The results are dramatic as Confessions‘ sound is further enhanced by new bassist Rich Gilliland (KJ-52, Brandon Heath) and drummer Taylor Carroll (After Edmund).
“I had never had goose bumps listening to our own music before, but this album is just on a whole different level,” says Pillar’s Beckley. “We’re indebted to everyone who played a role in pushing us out of our comfort zones. And I couldn’t be more proud of our band.”
Thematically, the album picks up where Pillar’s profound “Confessions Tour” left off earlier this year. A confessional curriculum–called “My Secret”–being taught in their local Tulsa, Oklahoma church changed the way the members of Pillar wanted to engage their audiences on tour. “We decided to give our fans a way to pour out their hearts anonymously, yet before God” says Beckley. “We took thousands of blank confession cards [distributed via a confessional booth] on the road. It definitely brought kids to the point of acknowledging their sin and what was going on.” The “Confessions Tour” had a defining impact on Pillar as its members read and prayed over each audience’s confession cards. Explains Beckley, “More than ever, it put things into a perspective of ‘what we do matters.’
That approach obviously carried over to the new album. Says Beckley, “1 John 1:9 says, ‘If we confess our sins, God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.’ Every song on this album could be broken down to ‘If you just confess.’” Under this umbrella, recurring themes on Confessions include unity, commitment and perseverance.