Boston post-hardcore band Pile have shared the second single from their forthcoming LP Green and Gray, titled “The Soft Hands of Stephen Miller.” Before you recoil in fear at the song’s title, just know that frontman Rick Maguire and company are just as disgusted as you are.
“The song is about the advisor to the president,” Maguire explains. “Usually, it’s difficult for me to concentrate much vitriol on one person, especially one I don’t know personally, but Stephen Miller is the exception.”
“I’ve had similar sentiments regarding our president but I can relate to him less than I can Stephen Miller, who is my age,” Maguire continues. “On my better days, the idea of the president just saddens me because I know he’s profoundly confused and damaged beyond repair, but Stephen Miller is a different brand of smug racist. I could imagine him being on my bus in high school, and that, I think, brings to light a different but related set of complicated emotions.”
“The Soft Hands of Stephen Miller” is easily the new album’s heaviest and most frantic track, culminating in a dizzying tailspin of drums, feedback and Maguire’s furious vocals. The single also comes with a video, directed by William Hart, that compiles grainy television appearances by the Trump advisor with footage of the inhumane conditions at the border to which his policies led.
Pile’s last album was A Hairshirt of Purpose, which came out in 2017 to wide critical acclaim. Green and Gray arrives May 3 on Exploding In Sound Records. Watch the video for “The Soft Hands of Stephen Miller” and check out Maguire’s solo performance in the Paste Studio from last year below.