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Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

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Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm vs Pile

Tropical Fuck Storm
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Pile
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Total votes : 24

Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby RSMurphy on Sun Sep 15, 2019 10:55 am

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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby A_Man_Who_Tries on Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:24 am

Neither are essential, though I like both. Pile maybe edge it.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby NewDarkAge on Sun Sep 15, 2019 11:31 am

I really like TFS but Pile is the more special band. Rick’s songs come from some strange place which has more to do with the American folk tradition than ‘noise rock’, which is a label that mistakes form for content imo. He’s been obsessively pursuing that thing for more than a decade and the result is a body of work that is unlike anything else. Nobody sounds like that, and it kind of bums me out that the more popular they’ve got the less people have seemed to pay attention to the astonishing things that actually happen in their music. TFS write great songs but often it’s like, yeah man I love The Ex/The Slits/The Raincoats too!
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby Dave N. on Sun Sep 15, 2019 12:16 pm

I’ve tried to get into Pile a number of times, but it hasn’t grabbed me. I would imagine seeing them live might change my mind. TFS has a leg up, because I was already a big Gareth Liddiard/Drones fan before I ever heard them. Also, I think the songwriting is more interesting than Pile’s.

TFS, for me.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby llllllllllllllllllllllll on Sun Sep 15, 2019 12:37 pm

Pile. I agree with the folk tradition comment, though if you were describing them to someone who hadn’t heard them before that wouldn’t make any sense. I never caught it from their records, but that’s exactly what I was thinking when I saw them live, particularly when Rick would fingerpick his way through verses that most of the band had dropped out of.

TFS, my feelings are complicated. Not sure how to describe it, but they seem like a party band, kind of like Primal Scream was. I still really want to catch them live but will have to wait until the next time they come to Texas. Maybe I need to have my face melted off in a sweaty room to get it.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby DrAwkward on Sun Sep 15, 2019 3:56 pm

Seen both live now. TFS by a mile, for me.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby askii on Sun Sep 15, 2019 5:07 pm

Love 'em both, though I'm not sure I see much similarity beyond maybe a deceptively sloppy presentation and the fact that they're among the shrinking ranks of "rock" (or non-"extreme" or whatever) bands that have really grabbed me in recent years.

Pile evokes home-state pride, and reminds me of a lot of the things I love about '90s indie rock (from Boston, in particular) while still maintaining a singular voice and vision. Terrific live band. I hear the "old, weird America" thing too; Rick seems fascinated by the grotesque, trashy side of Americana.

Still, it's TFS, super easy, zero waffles. I don't see Pile as nostalgic, but I can easily imagine having listened to them in some college dorm room and having loved them, maybe even more than I actually do. It's impossible to imagine TFS making sense, or existing at all, at any previous point in history -- which doesn't make them dated, but puts them in the company of, say, It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back or OK Computer. Music that invents a new language to describe a new feeling, and helps me articulate and understand that feeling. That's a pretty rarefied category of music. It's hard to talk about TFS without saying gawky shit like "life-changing", but it's been two weeks since I saw them and I still feel kind of altered.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby jeff_fox on Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:51 am

FWIW, Rick solo is better than Pile.

This thunderdome makes total sense to me because both bands have a great sound, write super cool guitar lines, but for the most part, the songs themselves don't grab me. Pile has a few classics and I'm never bored listening to them, but I also never really need to put on their records. TFS, I just don't really get. The vocals are melodramatic in an off putting way (I wish the female singer sang all the songs), and the only song that's memorable to me is the Tyres one (and even this one has that 'verge of tears' quality that I don't care for. But yeah, I'm a sucker for warbly, weird guitar playing so I don't dislike it.

Pile by a lot. Rick playing solo by way more. And that's totally not a slight on the rest of the band. They are great, especially the drummer.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby yaledelay on Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:52 am

I like Pile, but TFS makes Pile look like well a steaming... Pile.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby DrAwkward on Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:16 pm

jeff_fox wrote:TFS, I just don't really get. The vocals are melodramatic in an off putting way (I wish the female singer sang all the songs), and the only song that's memorable to me is the Tyres one (and even this one has that 'verge of tears' quality that I don't care for.


TFS may be my favorite active band right now (especially after seeing them on Saturday) but these are criticisms that i totally understand. It makes sense and i get why that would be off-putting!

If you're a fan of Erica Dunn's voice check out MOD CON, the band she fronts. More of a straight-ahead post-punk indie rock thing but with great lyrics and kinda Wire-ish bass lines and occasional noisy bits.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby PARPS on Mon Sep 16, 2019 5:09 pm

Kind of insane to me how many people are saying TFS. I mean, taste is taste, and I think both bands are great, but I don't think TFS have put out anything that touches Dripping. Not that they couldn't, which is the issue here--seems weird to compare a band 7 albums in to one that just put out their second. I get that there are the Drones albums as a kind of prelude, but still. Reminds me of the "Fugazi vs. Nirvana" thread. Just kinda baffling to me (this one less so than that one, though).

TFS would win for me against just about anyone going right now. One of the few exceptions would be Pile. Ask me a few more albums down the line and it might change, but right now it's Pile, no question.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby Ranxerox on Mon Sep 16, 2019 8:40 pm

I put Pile and TFS and Sharpie Crows in a thumb file. They go well together, along with a few other outfits who escape me at present.

I like TFS better.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby askii on Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:10 pm

DrAwkward wrote:If you're a fan of Erica Dunn's voice check out MOD CON, the band she fronts. More of a straight-ahead post-punk indie rock thing but with great lyrics and kinda Wire-ish bass lines and occasional noisy bits.

TFS vs. MOD CON would be a nontrivial Thunderdome for me.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby sulfur)addict on Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:54 am

Pile is among the most dynamic bands around, both Dripping and Hairshirt are close to modern classics in my book, and they've set the room on fire all three times I've seen 'em. Even the new one, which I wasn't stoked on, had a 3-song run that blew me away, and the rest I warmed up to following a few listens.

Fuck Storm do the stabby noise break thing, sounds like they're still figuring out where they want to go. The new one is better than the last one, but I still struggle when it tries to be earnest and clever at the same time - it only happens during Gareth's songs but it happens every time. I would like to see them live, sure, but I'd still take The Drones as my backup to a knife fight.

Pile, super easy.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby NewDarkAge on Tue Sep 17, 2019 3:55 am

Wonder if an age divide is emerging here. That’s kind of interesting.

jeff_fox wrote:FWIW, Rick solo is better than Pile.


Unless Rick has changed his mind the next record is going to be a ‘mellow’ one, closer to when he plays solo.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby Mason on Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:06 am

Both are dazzling and fascinating at times, although I don't reach for either as often as some of y'all.

I'm more impressed by Lidiard's guitar playing—oh how I wish my hands could get used to playing a Jaguar so I could mangle the shit out of one like that—but for the Song part of the songs it's Pile all the way. And I have less of a clue as to where Pile music comes from, so yeah, my vote's for Pile.

(Going to take a second to imagine an alternate timeline where most PRF denizens were introduced to The Drones before hearing TFS.)
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby llllllllllllllllllllllll on Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:25 am

Mason wrote:(Going to take a second to imagine an alternate timeline where most PRF denizens were introduced to The Drones before hearing TFS.)


I would bet most people here have, they’re probably just not speaking up in that thread as much. The Drones seemed more popular than TFS is.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby yaledelay on Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:33 am

Mason wrote:Both are dazzling and fascinating at times, although I don't reach for either as often as some of y'all.

I'm more impressed by Lidiard's guitar playing—oh how I wish my hands could get used to playing a Jaguar so I could mangle the shit out of one like that—but for the Song part of the songs it's Pile all the way. And I have less of a clue as to where Pile music comes from, so yeah, my vote's for Pile.

(Going to take a second to imagine an alternate timeline where most PRF denizens were introduced to The Drones before hearing TFS.)


Live Gaz was using a (two slightly different) Jazzmasters, and Erica has a mustang and some other guitar that had kind of a mustang body (and vibrato system) and a different headstock shape. Both broke strings I am sure from whang-bar abuse.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby Tommy on Tue Sep 17, 2019 12:27 pm

yaledelay wrote:Live Gaz was using a (two slightly different) Jazzmasters.


They were both 24" scale Jaguars. One was one of those more modern Japanese ones with the black headstocks; he repainted the body orange. The candy apple red one is likely a 90s Japanese one. Both were fitted with probably the same bridge humbucker (both of which were oriented "backward"). He also taped something onto the end of both tremolo bars to make them a little longer.

I really like Erica's playing.
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Re: Thunderdome: Tropical Fuck Storm Vs. Pile

Postby cneutron on Fri Sep 20, 2019 9:00 am

Two very different bands, but for me: Tropical Fuck Storm, easy.
I respect Pile more than I like it.
Seems like it should be a band I love. It’s fine?
I’ve seen them play, and seen dude play acoustic.
I was pumped for my friends that love the songs so much.

I think the TFS are more traditional than people give them credit for, but there is so much warped weirdness surrounding it, it’s hard to notice. A good example is that stripped down thing they did sometime back, hammer on the trap kit. Tiny amps. That thing show cased the songs in a cool way.

The alternating of Gaz singing and then Erica and Fiona doubling up is an incredible dynamic that in hard pressed to think of a parallel to.

I think Pile has had more time to marinate with people, so we will see how reactions change over time.
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