Starting up almost exactly where they left off on their debut album – 2012’s fantastic You Ruin Everything – Pigs have graced us with this stop-gap tour EP, bridging time between now and the release of their anticipated second album. Given the band’s pedigree it’s not surprising that the debut album was a) a blood-stained love letter to all things angry, spiteful and angular that came out of the nineties and b) excellent, but there’s always a hint of worry when a much-loved band, no matter how good, release something new.
One pounding kick drum and fuzzy bass note into opener “Gaffe” and all fears have been allayed that Pigs would mess with such a magical formula as was laid down on the debut. Tortured electric guitars twist and howl dissonantly over a hotbed of hard-hitting drums and restless fuzzy basslines, while Dave Curran’s vocal chords unthread before our ears. The anarchic bounce and sing-along quality to the chorus of “Elo Kiddies” betrays the sound of a band that grew up on classic Kiss and Alice Cooper records, and they seem to be having fun with the idea of “classic rock” being given a noise rock spin. The sleazy punch-drunk lurch of “If I’m in Luck” brings the EP to a close in muscular fashion – discordant guitars riding huge lumbering bass riffs and clattering drums for seven punishing minutes.
Everything about Pigs’ debut album, from the spiteful title to the Steve Albini-like production, was the epitome of late eighties, early nineties alternative/noise rock, and without being derivative, the same can be said for Gaffe. Fans of the debut will find much to love about Gaffe, but it would also serve as a great bite-sized introduction to those who are unfamiliar with Pigs’ unique brand of chaos. If you like Unsane, Killdozer and/or the Melvins, I can’t think of a better way to invest a quarter of an hour of your time.
Scribed by: Tom McKibbin