Rock & roll has always been a potent medium, and over the years, its practitioners have used it to spread a variety of messages from rebellion to peace and love. These days, there's a new breed of rockers who are using the music as a vehicle for sharing their faith. Pillar is one of those bands.
Comprising guitarist Noah Henson, drummer Brad Noone, bassist Kalel and front-man Rob Beckley (who's also a US Army reservist), Pillar has become one of Christian rock's most acclaimed groups. While, musically, they draw comparisons to such mainstream bands as Linkin Park, lyrically, the band isn't shy about creating songs that spread the gospel. Kalel says songwriting is key to sharing their faith. "It's everything," he says. "Rob does all the lyrics and the rest of us write the music. I'll either come up with a bass line and they'll write a song off it or Noah will come up with a guitar part and we'll jam."
That spirit of collaboration was born when the members of Pillar met at Fort Hayes State University in Hayes, Kansas. "We were in a small town and there weren't a whole lot of musicians that wanted to be in a Christian band in that town," recalls Kalel. "So we got together and started doing it."
They recorded two independent albums that caught the attention of Franklin, Tennessee-based Flicker Records. Above, released in 2000, won the Gospel Music Association's Dove Award for "Best Hard Rock Album of the Year" (2001) and included the Dove Hard Rock Recorded Song of the Year,"Live For Him.” In the spring of 2002, Flicker issued Pillar's latest effort, Fireproof.
"All our lyrics are always bold," says Kalel, adding that Fireproof was inspired by scripture in Daniel, chapter 3. "The whole concept is for people to have faith — big time faith. Saying you have faith and actually believing and trusting in God are separate things. We hope that kids take that whole concept and that theme of 'Fireproof' every day in their lives to help them through."