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Pig Destroyer: Head Cage

A head cage is a medieval torture device, something you only want to experience in a book or a museum. The cover art wisely does not show us the device, that is left for the viewer to imagine. What the art does show is the aftermath of some kind of physical (and psychological) trauma. It’s a powerful image, one that also suggests something of the musical power Pig Destroyer creates.

For those who do not keep up with Pig Destroyer, it’s been six years since Book Burner, a good, if occasionally tedious, release that garnered quite a bit of attention. Since then, the band released Mass and Volume, a two-song EP that showed the band’s slower�"and more doom-laden�"side. That was an outstanding release, mostly because it let the band try out new sounds and textures all at once.

With this release, the band continues to explore musical options even if things stick much closer to grindcore than doom. The first track plays with the listener by warning them about the power of the sounds that follow. The band then provides several seconds of noise that gets things ready for the raw power of “Dark Train.” Most of the tracks on this album are under three minutes. Most of them are solid even if they occasionally start and stop so abruptly that distracted listeners may not be sure where they are. Of the shorter tracks, I enjoyed “Mt. Skull” and “Army of Cops” pretty well but my favorite track was definitely “The Torture Fields.” That track has a solid opening riff that quickly shifts from a doom-inspired sound into something more akin to thrash. This is the kind of song Pig Destroyer was meant to write. It combines power with wild abandon. If nothing else, I’d recommend that track to interested listeners.

The album wraps up with a seven-minute track entitled “House of Snakes.” For long-form Pig Destroyer, I would always recommend the expansive “Mass and Volume” from a couple of years ago. Still, “House of Snakes” gives the band a chance to add more layers of musical texture to their already brutal sound. It’s also a killer track. This is a strong release from a band that keeps getting better.

Track Listing:
1. The Tunnel Under the Tracks
2. Dark Train
3. Army of Cops
4. Circle River
5. The Torture Fields
6. Terminal Itch
7. Concrete Beast
8. The Adventures of Jason and JR
9. Mt. Skull
10. Trap Door Man
11. The Last Song
12. House of Snakes

Added: September 3rd 2018
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 749
Language: english

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