Ginger Pooley has made a name for herself while playing bass for The Smashing Pumpkins, and after that venture concluded, she set her eyes on something else-something heavier.
She would call this project Burning Pools, which would be comprised of her, guitarist Max Bernstein and her husband, Kris Pooley. They all flourished from differing backgrounds and music preferences, everything from Led Zeppelin, Metallica, Blondie and The Go-Go’s, but they all had a common desire to build something with a heavier sound, with distorted guitars and bridges that are almost breakdowns.
“The initial vision for our band was to play the heavy and loud music that makes us happy,” Ginger told American Songwriter. “We’ve all been involved in a lot of pop music, which is great. But we wanted to create a place for ourselves that allowed us to wallow in distortion with no apologies.”
Burning Pools came together after Kris and Max met while mutually working with Kesha. And they immediately hit it off. When Kris and Ginger set out to start a band, Max was the first player they reached out to, knowing his style would match the music they were seeking to create.
“His affinity for heavy, sludge guitars was perfect for the music we were starting to write,” Ginger said.
It didn’t take the trio too long to churn out their first single “Band Bang”, a song about the shape of society and its mixed-up priorities. “I hope that people will feel empowered and seen. There’s are a lot of shitty things going on in the world. The priorities of “the world” are backwards,” Ginger said. Kris and Ginger had been working on the song for some time, usually at night or whenever they could catch a break from their young daughter, before handing it over to Max.
“We did a demo of ‘Bang Bang’ before even thinking of starting the band” Ginger said about the song. “I think we sat down to work on it when our daughter was taking a nap. It feels like this song has just been with us for a long time. When we got Max in the mix, the song really came to life. He was pretty adamant that it needed a bridge, which I was fine to go without. I had lived with it for so long, I couldn’t even imagine what the bridge could be. But I’m so glad Max pushed for something more because now it’s one of the coolest parts of the song. After writing the bridge, the song really felt complete and we got to work recording it.”
Max’s push to add a bridge to “Bang Bang,” stirred up the existing dynamic and offered a path for consistent and collaborative writing among the trio for their future songs. And most of the songs always seems to start off as a recorded snippet on someone’s phone before getting tossed around.
“The songwriting is collective,” Ginger said. “Usually someone comes up with an idea, records it on their phone or makes a very rough demo. Then we send it around so we can all wrap our brains around it. Then we build it on it from there in rehearsal and in the studio. I know for Kris and I, an idea will often pop up while doing mundane things. Then we’ll go scrambling for our phones to record it before it flies away.”
With a follow-up single to “Bang Bang” slated for next month, the group is also planning to release an EP, later this year and constantly writing new material, in addition to working hard on the upcoming video for “Bang Bang.” Follow them on Instagram and Twitter to check out what’s next and listen to “Bang Bang” here or on Spotify.