Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Pig Destroyer - Book Burner

Pig Destroyer - Book Burner [Grindcore]

You do not need to be a fan of grindcore to appreciate this. 

Five years after Pig Destroyer shocked the world with its seamless mix of both violent sonicscapes and intellectual song writing in Phantom Limb, and after a whole series of bad luck (their got burnt down, departure of then drummer Brian Harvey), Book Burner was definitely one of the most anticipated albums of 2012, but unlike bands that fail to deliver consecutively, Pig Destroyer not only satisfies fans and critics alike, it pushes the boundaries of grindcore in a way even Napalm Death could not have imagined. 

Boasting sterile clean production, with piercing drum beats by none other than Misery Index leader Adam Jarvis, a satisfactory performance by vocalist J. R. Hayes, and a completely unexpected performance of pure aggression by guitarist and founding member Scott Hull. Guitar riffage may not be the most appealing factor in grindcore but Scot Hull has completely burned the book of rules on genre definitions. 

Yes, the template of the album is grindcore, but there are numerous moments when the band blurs the lines between all forms of metal; thrash riffs flirt with your ears for as little as five seconds, and lightning fast riffs seem to all crash into one another to form a compressed groove riff, stopping with such unpredictability that it seems Jarvis and Hull are symbiotic in their playing, and their cohesiveness in the music has been one of the best I've heard this year, possibly even topping Cannibal Corpse's Torture earlier this year (which by the way, is still one of my personal favourite albums this year). Jarvis himself is no slouch, opting for a refined and mathematical precision rather than his typical blastbeats in Misery Index, and without indulging in its own complexity but rather creating a sharp and focused performance. The absence of a bassist is almost negligible because Hull's eight string guitar takes up the space of its lower pitched compartment, and the amount of memorable riffs and hooks in this album, its more than some bands' entire catalogs. The intro of 'Permanent Funeral' sounds like a modern version of Slayer's classic Raining Blood. 

This is not just the best grindcore album to come out in probably the history of the genre, this might damn well even propel the band to the peaks of the elite with its apocalyptic vision, power and rage, core ingredients of metal which has since been long forgotten with the rise of homosexuality and femininity in the music industry. Tie with Krallice for album of the year now. 

★★★★★ Excellent - Undisputed classic for critical listening


JE's Take:

This is the first time I'm listening to anything by Pig Destroyer and I'm digging this stuff already. Though 'Burning Palm' may be the album's de facto single, I feel that 'Baltimore Strangler' is the album's best piece and defining track.

As has already been said, the band, in this album, manages to stretch preexisting definitions of grindcore and turns in a surprisingly enjoyable and musical effort replete with tangible elements of thrash and - dare I say it - metalcore/screamo.

Unlike Satthia, however, I'm not yet ready to elevate this album to historical status - the vocal performance hinders me from doing so. A historically good album has to have little to no discernible holes; the vocals in this album are passable at best, and a stark drop-off from the rhythm section.

Still, Book Burner is a great album that fully merits the following:
Rating: ★★★★☆ Good - Strong flow, immediately grabs you

No comments:

Post a Comment