Pigs – You Ruin Everything (Solar Flare Records, 11 April 2012)
Well, good morning. Another new day, another day closer to the weekend. The real shitty part is, though, I spent about half of yesterday convinced that it was actually Wednesday, which made me real depressed when I realized it wasn’t. Things were looking up as quitting time was approaching, but then when a departing coworker announced “See you all tomorrow – hey, tomorrow’s Wednesday already!” in a way-too-cheerful voice, well that made it about a hundred times worse. I was feeling pretty pissed off, and decided I needed something to listen to that’s equally pissed off, or who knows, I might have ended up breaking something.
So how has your week been so far? If it’s anything like mine has been, maybe you need some angry music too. Here’s what worked for me, I hope this will help you as well.
I’m going to start out by assuming you’re already familiar with Unsane, that groundbreaking blend of classic NYHC and noise rock, which is still going strong after nearly a quarter-century? If you aren’t, I’d suggest you correct that oversight real quick!
If you do know the band, you’ll be glad to hear that not only did they put out a new album earlier this year, but bassist Dave Curran (who’s been with the band since 1994) has a new side-project called Pigs, who also just released a new album. And, you’ll be even gladder to know that it sounds awesome!
I don’t know exactly how it went down, whether Curran was just bored one day, or if he decided that he had way too much music in him and needed yet another avenue of expression, but anyway, somehow he ended up putting together this new trio where he handles the guitar and vocals. Joining him on drums is his fellow Player’s Club member, Jim Paradise, and completing the line-up on bass is producer Andrew Schneider.
As you might expect, the overall style here is not a huge departure from whar you hear in Unsane, being similarly based in hardcore and noise. The blend of sounds — and the dynamic range demonstrated across the collection of songs — also reminds me of Today is the Day, particularly in that band’s more lucid and structured moments. That comparison strikes me the most in what is probably my favorite track of the bunch, “Massive Operator Failure.”
In that song, as in most that you’ll find here, there is a nice dynamic contrast, with some more mellow musical moments set against the grinding and churning angst. Interestingly enough, those quieter points seem to be darker, infused with more emotion, and somehow seething with more anger that the noisier passages. In that way, there are a couple occasions in this album which also bring to my mind those oft-cited pioneers who had such influence on the grunge, post-punk, no-wave, and noise-rock genres, The Pixies. Except with way more yelling, and a better bass player (sorry Kim).
For a small sample of the great hardcore grooves to be found here, please enjoy this video for the song “Give It.” Then, you can stream the entire album (and you can also buy a digital download of it) by using the Bandcamp widget below that…
You can also grab your copy of You Ruin Everything on vinyl from Solar Flare, here.
If you still can’t get enough Pigs, they also have a self-titled three-song EP that came out way back in February 2011, which is available for listening or downloading via Coextinction Recordings, here.