Although there’s not a lot out there yet from Pilot The Helm, they’re still an act that you need to start paying attention to. They’re currently making waves with their new EP, in particular their songs “Fire” and “Things We Do In The Dark.” Recently, Alex Piemonte, one half of Pilot The Helm, chatted with Alternative Addiction about the duo’s brand-new EP and the formation of the project with producer Michael Schawel.
“I was in college, I just dropped out and I just started playing music and writing full time. I was going to do a solo project and I went to Mike and we started working on an EP that I was going to release. We started with a couple of songs. We were in the process of writing and recording it and the first song in he started co-writing. So, we thought, we might as well make this a band. We work and write well together too.”
Oddly enough, the song that’s getting the most attention for Alex and Michael is “Fire.” Like a lot of important songs for bands, it came about in an unexpected way. The guys were finishing up their EP, but they felt they needed one more song – that’s when they wrote the song.
“We had some ideas for a fifth song. That was the last one we wrote for the EP. We had some ideas, but we ended up just starting from scratch. We had a couple of drinks and we got to work. We started with that first riff and then we added a pad-in and the rest is history. That song was written in a day or two, I almost couldn’t believe it. We knew it was pretty good when we wrote it.”
The band started out as a purely studio project, but they’re looking to make more of an impact with their live shows. That’s something they’re just getting started with, although with their first show they had one hell of a jump.
“When we released the EP this past summer. When we did that it was still just me and Mikey. So, we weren’t prepared to do the live show. Since then we’ve got a couple of guys for the live band. We started playing gigs about two months ago. We’re still trying to get that going full steam. The first show though, that was incredible. We played Octoberfest in Itasca and 130 people showed up and everybody knew the words. It was insane.”
Even though the band has been running for a couple of years, keep in mind that they just released their first EP only a few months ago. They’re a building act and they’re likely to be that for the next year or so.
“Right now, we’re still in the initial stages of being a band,” noted Piemonte. “We’re still working on getting all of our stuff together and booking more shows. We’re working on a new album too. We’re really trying to push the promotion and getting our stuff together. I learned a lot about self-releasing and self-promotion from the first EP. From that, it put us in a good position for the next release. We have a better idea of what we need to do now. Nobody knows the industry really, but you don’t know for yourself until you throw yourself into it and f#*! it up a little bit. We’re moving forward, and we’ll see where that takes us.” -aa