For this Special DOC III Edition of Making Meaning, we’re talking with Zach, Joe, and Mike of Pillärs!

Catch Pillärs at Descendants of Crom III on Saturday 9.21.19 at Cattivo! Get tickets here.

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Let’s make some meaning…


Pillärs plays heavy music. They’re from Cleveland, Ohio and they play a blend of Sludge, Doom, and Thrash Metal.

Formed in 2015, Pillärs has three releases. Their latest release is a 2019 12″ split with Akron, Ohio’s Wallcreeper. They’ve got some exciting upcoming shows, including Quebec Deathfest 9/14; Crushing Sound Fest 9/28; Fall Tour (Southern East Coast) 10/3-10/13; and Halloween bash 10/31.

Pillärs is: Zach G. (guitar, vocals), Joe Lipa (bass, vocals), and Mike Burrows (drums).


Keep up-to-date with Pillärs on FacebookInstagram, and Bandcamp.


Listen to the song “100 Knives” from Pillärs’ split PILLÄRS/WALLCREEPER and learn what meaning Zach, Joe, and Mike make:


“100 Knives” was recorded March 2019 at the 110th House, Cleveland, Ohio by Paul Maccarone, mixed and mastered for vinyl by Ryan Foltz, and written & produced by Pillärs. Released on the PILLÄRS / WALLCREEPER split 12″ EP.

Lyrics to “100 Knives”

Swallow it down / Bitterest pill / How does it sit / Inside a throat

Sew / My eyes / Closed

Choking on glass / One hundred knives / Scraps of a past / I don’t want to see

Bind / My hands / To bone

Cast all these shadows / To the wind / Carry these burdens / To the sky / There is a place / I long to be / Bury me there / When I’m gone

Zach, Joe, and Mike Speak

Zach: 100 Knives…where do you start? It’s not just one meaningful thing, it’s so much more. That song was the first real piece we wrote with our new bassist Joe, who came on board in Fall 2018, so I think for us it’s representative of some of the new directions we may be leaning towards. There’s certainly a different feeling with that song when you compare it to most of the songs on our first record [Abandoned]. It was actually an incredibly challenging song to help write for me, because as we really started flowing on it I was forced way outside my comfort zone. And that’s a good thing. For me, it’s a song that represents a step along the path as we evolve as a band. I’m not going to discuss any of the lyrics here, because I feel like everyone who listens should get their own meaning from it. But for me, it’s one of the most personal songs I’ve ever written, like ever.

“It’s not just one meaningful thing, it’s so much more.” – Zach of Pillärs on their song “100 Knives”

Joe: This piece means a lot to me being my first contribution with the group. It was an exciting test being our first time collaborating in the songwriting process together and helping turn the next page to the next chapter.

Mike: This song’s been through at least 3 different versions – every time we though we had something finished we smashed it to pieces and put it back together again. It took a ton of work but we’re all stoked with how it came out. Also it’s what happens when Zach listens to nothing but Keelhaul II for a month straight haha.


We talked to Zach, Joe, and Mike about playing at Descendants of Crom III. The Third Annual Descendants of Crom heavy music festival takes place in Pittsburgh, PA September 20 – 22, 2019.

How do you feel about playing DOC III?

As a band, we’re really excited to share two days of madness and heavy music with some friends and hopefully make some new ones too. A fair number of the bands playing are people who we’ve known personally for years, or who have crashed at our places after a show, or at some point we’ve shared a bill together. So it’s feeling like a big weirdo family reunion.

What can the audience expect from your performance?

We will be playing mostly new songs, both from our latest release [split EP w/Wallcreeper] and a couple more that we have written since Joe has been on board. Of course there are some songs from Abandoned that we still like playing and just fit well live, so people who have followed us for a few years can expect to hear some of those songs too.

What other bands are you excited to see perform?

We are definitely excited that so many of our friends are playing this fest: definitely Tines, who are Joe’s longtime buddies from Buffalo, NY; Fox 45, who we first caught sharing a bill together at Ohio Doomed and Stoned Fest this past July and who really blew us away; Coma, because Mountain Jeff has been a friend to us and our band for awhile but we have still yet to see this latest band of his live despite an endless text message of trying to figure out schedules for shows. At some point in the past three years we’ve probably played with a good number of these bands, so the excitement factor is definitely going to come from catching those bands that we haven’t seen live yet.

What else do you want readers to know?

We just want to say thanks to everyone who has been there for us and with us these past few years. These past few years have been a really challenging time in our lives and cliche as it is to say, this music that we create really has gotten and is still getting us through it all. Endless thanks and respect to Shy and the Blackseed Records crew for hosting an amazing event. Hope to see a lot of folks out there!

Thanks so much to Zach, Joe, and Mike of Pillärs for talking with us about their song “100 Knives” and Descendants of Crom III! We hope this adds to your experience of their band, their song, and their performance. Thanks for making meaning with us.

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