With the world in the state that it is right now, it’s important to find any type of solace available. All of that is made incredibly harder considering the circumstances, but there are little bits of lightness to be found amidst the darkness. That can be taken in a metaphorically and literally sense, especially when considering the new record from Newcastle’s Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs Pigs (Pigsx7). Viscerals as a whole may be more of a mouthful than their name is, coupling brute and encapsulating riffs with ghastly choruses in a way that hits in all the right ways. There’s a reason why bassist Johnny Hedley is on record for saying their music and playing it on stage is like “therapy through noise”—their robust clatters and thuds prompt an exorcising through headbanging. Viscerals is cathartic for all parties involved.
Comparisons to classic hard hitters like Motörhead and Black Sabbath are warranted from the start. The drumbeat opening the album on “Reducer” immediately draws you in before Matt Baty starts to hypnotically shriek. “Rubbernecker” keeps that same hold, incorporating a heady, sludgy-psych type of riff, plus a mildly bluesy breakdown in the middle of the song to boot. Pigsx7 has the pedal to the floor by the third track. “New Body” is them at their finest with grimy riffs and near poetic lyricism from Matty Baty—“I’m dancing with the devil with two left feet,” is a particularly noteworthy line. “Halloween Bolson” and “Blood and Butter” offer up similar strength in word and sound pairings.
Pigsx7 closes things out with the heavy and hard rock of “Hell’s Teeth.” While there isn’t anything necessarily remarkable of note, there’s a certain groove to it that’s only elevated by Baty’s incessant shouting, making it a solid Pigs track to end on. There’s a lot of emotion packed in Viscerals, and though it may not have been made to be so fitting for the moment, it most certainly is.