Three Mile Pilot: The Inevitable Past Is The Future Forgotten Review
The Three Mile Pilot story starts in San Diego in the early 90s. Formed by members Armistead Burwell Smith IV (Pinback), Pall Jenkins (The Blackheart Procession) and Thomas Zinser (Pinback), their debut was a strictly bass/drums/vocals affair that led the way for a template that a lot of bands followed through the rest of the 90s. Jenkins eventually started playing guitar and after another record they gained the attention of Geffen records. The deal went bad and fortunately they were able to hang on to their master which ended up being their swansong full length, 1997’s “Another Dessert, Another Sea”. After one more amazing EP put out by Gravity Records, Three Mile Pilot quietly disappeared. The last we heard from them was 13 years ago, but don’t think they haven’t been busy. The Blackheart Procession has put out 6 records since and Pinback almost the same amount. Rumors have existed for the last few years that there’d be a new record and finally they’re true.
“The Inevitable Past is the Future Forgotten” is a more focused, practiced versions of their younger selves. “Battle” starts off the record solidly, a low tornado siren starts in the background with a sharp guitar and Jenkins’ unmistakable vocals. An almost bouncy keyboard line keeps the song moving along as an upbeat opener. “Same Mistake” is an early standout of the record. “This cold weather is chilling my bones / this type of living is killing my soul” Jenkins sings in the chorus over the piano driven song, one of the fastest moving of the record. “The Threshold” is one of the songs that bears a distinct similarity to the members’ other bands, in this case the Blackheart Procession. “What’s In The Air” is another standout late in the record, with a phased guitar chug and Smith taking on the lead vocals. “The Premonition” closes out the record with a quiet piano ballad.
Initially, Three Mile Pilot influenced what their other bands would sound like. But now over a decade later, “The Inevitable…” bears the unmistakable influence of their other bands. But to simply call this record a mix of the two, Three Mile Pilot creates a voice distinctly their own. Was the wait worth it? Absolutely.