This Pigs article was written by Jack Roe, a GIGsoup contributor. Edited by Natalie Whitehouse
It is a credit to the cohesion of this astonishing, brutal, rage-fuelled sucker punch album that you can hear and learn pretty much everything you need to in its final two tracks. In the penultimate song, the title track ‘Wronger,’ you can find the rage, tricky time signature, sludgy driving rhythms and drill sergeant vocals that populate the rest of the album in a neat three and a half minute explosion. In the album’s finale ‘Donnybrook,’ from its intimidating 8 minute run time to its refusal to give the listener a quick, or easy, pay-off you can tell that you are dealing here with a band that has been around the block, more than once.
Indeed, Pigs is not the first project of any of its three members and it is this weariness, youthful angst turned into manful cynicism, that centers the album’s walls of sludge and distortion into something more coherent.
Aside from the final two tracks, there is plenty here to recommend; but it must be noted that this is not picnic music, this is not music seeking new friends. This is the soundtrack to wasted late nights turning inexorably into wasted early mornings and there is a real sense here that if this album was heard by few and bought by less then it wouldn’t necessarily concern its creators. There is little here in the way of urgency and vitality and this not meant as an insult. There is something accessible in its adherence to noisy, scratchy metal infused punk and indecipherable lyrics, as a listener this music pays you no deference you may take the trip if you like, but don’t ask for refunds if you don’t find it quite as scenic as you hoped.
The best tracks on the album are probably ‘The Life in Pink’ and ‘Bet It All On Black’, second and third on the list respectively. ‘The Life in Pink,’ with its hypnotic opening leading into a mountainous riff that manages almost to update the sound of Helmet’s early 90’s classic ‘Unsung’ in its slick rhythmic interplays and overlaps. ‘Bet It All On Black’ is an exercise in menace that barrels out of the gates all breathless punk energy and finishes up, a little under six minutes later, with an irresistible sludgy doom groove. Intelligent song-craft and expert musicianship combined.
In summary this album is a dark hearted delight that chugs, hypnotizes, unsettles and surprises in equal measure.
‘Wronger’ is out on the 2nd October via Solar Flare Records.