Call me jaded but on being confronted with band name All Pigs Must Die I did a sort of mental “tsk” noise then carried on with the business of reading. Milliseconds later when I saw that their album was called “God Is War” I made a mental aside to check that on wikipedia. It seems wrong somehow. When (some more milliseconds later) my eyes alighted on the lovely artwork (corpse Jesus’ head on an upside down cross) I thought “I’m receiving a clear message here”.
Yes they are a metal band, in case anyone is wondering, but not in the rubbish early 90’s way. No, this is new metal ! No, hang on it’s not that either. It’s crust metal ! What does that mean ? I don’t know ! I think it means that it strips metal down to its basics and injects it with infected punk adrenaline. Or it may be meaningless.
The album opens brilliantly with an effective and ominous intro but all the anticipation drains away when they settle into their four to the floor rhythm and it sounds ludicrously familiar. Yes it’s steroidally inflamed and yes the production is muscular but the actual playing and songwriting opens no doors in my head. I find no real features on track two so move on to number three which showcases an excellent drum intro and nifty guitar work (bass and regular). Four (the title track) passes by with no real impression but tracks five and six do impress with their sheer intense ferocity.
If I was listening to metal for the first time and I was looking for a band to grace the back of my new denim jacket with their patch, APMD would probably fit the bill but I am not new to metal. Mastodon outstrip them for pure riffage, Dillinger Escape Plan beat them for inventiveness and I can think of a whole host of bands that do more interesting things on record. So the proof of the pudding will be what sort of impressions the band make on tour I guess.