Pillar

Where Do We Go from Here

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Pillar returns after the success of 2002's Fireproof with Where Do We Go from Here, a further streamlining of the combo's cross of alternative CCM and secular post-grunge chunkery. Elements of rap-rock still exist, particularly in the intonation of vocalist Rob Beckley, but cuts like "Hypnotized," "Bring Me Down," and "Let It Out" are closer to where Pillar is now, opting for the slick and brooding aggression of a Hoobastank or Seether. The band still prefers to preach subtly -- lyrics allude as easily to the Big JC as they do a hearty or faulty earthly relationship. "I want you to know/I finally see/That you simply love," goes "Simply" -- the lyric sheet prints in caps to prevent specific pronoun assignment. The quieter "Rewind" is a similarly first-person meditation on past mistakes, while "Underneath It All" is a propulsive confidence number with some great dirty guitar tones from Noah Henson. Other highlights of this solid effort include the late-album entries "Staring Back" and "One Thing," which offer a bit of grit after the softer detours of Where Do We Go from Here's midsection. It's another quality effort from Pillar, who probably deserve more exposure, as they can hang sonically with any of their mainstream post-grunge peers.

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