Local Wire

The Black Heart Procession @ Crescent Ballroom

Following a major-label disaster, much-hyped and beloved San Diego band Three Mile Pilot broke up before the dawn of this millennium. The group's splintering allowed members to focus on other projects: Armistead Burwell Smith IV turned his focus to the proggy Pinback, while Pall Jenkins and Tobias Nathanial turned their focus toward The Black Heart Procession. The former has earned a legion of fans for its complex, intricate melodies; the latter has preferred a more mysterious existence. Amore del Tropico (2002) creeped in with foreboding island textures, while Six, the band's last proper full-length, explored stately, string-laden mysticism. The sounds of the two collided last year, when Three Mile Pilot got back together for The Inevitable Past Is the Future Forgotten. Songs such as "What's in the Air" retained strong elements of the band's post-TMP projects, but the over-arching sense of dread seemed to indicate that the gothy, murky sound of The Black Heart Procession might have been what made TMP work so well in the first place.

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Jason P. Woodbury is a music and pop-culture writer based in Phoenix. He is a regular contributor to the music blog Aquarium Drunkard and co-host of the Transmissions podcast.