Pig Destroyer - _Phantom Limb_
(Relapse Records, 2007)
by: Jackie Smit (9 out of 10)
Although it couldn't all possibly be to everyone's liking, it's hard to argue against the fact that heavy music as a whole is currently in rude health. The post-nu metal histrionics of metalcore's slack-jawed exponents aside, even the less accessible end of the underground's ever-lengthening spectrum appears to be more vibrant than ever. In recent times, both death and black metal have offered up a gamut of stellar efforts, delivered by newcomers as well as future hall of famers. Then there's grindcore. Long the staple of the backroom mail order scene, a slew of intelligent and challenging releases has seen this oft-misunderstood subgenre poke its nose out from underneath the sewers and find its way on to such illustrious media as the pages of Alternative Press.

Skirting the upper recesses of this pile is Virginia's Pig Destroyer. Having already stunned and amazed all who sought out their surprisingly ambitious _Terrifyer_ opus in 2004, their fourth full-length may have been three years in the making, but still manages to detonate with all the spontaneous violence of a ballistic missile. The production is chunky and focused, and the delivery is, without fail, acutely on point. But these aren't the key ingredients of the Pig Destroyer experience.

While J.R. Hayes' vocals may veer toward the extreme opposite of sagacious, and Brian Harvey is able to blast with the best of 'em, what truly adds the nitroglycerine to the band's onslaught is songwriting ability that is second to none. Eschewing any of the psychedelic ascertainment or the stoned absurdity of their peers, they adopt a sparing approach that is blisteringly effective. It's best demonstrated on songs like "Jupiter's Eye" and "Loathsome", where chaos gives way to hook-addled breaks that are inimical, acerbic and thoroughly exhilarating. True, it still won't make _Phantom Limb_ the most challenging listen you'll encounter this year, but it will undoubtedly be one of the most shamelessly entertaining.

Contact: http://www.myspace.com/therealpigdestroyer

(article published 10/6/2007)


ALBUMS
11/4/2012 J Carbon 7.5 Pig Destroyer - Book Burner
10/31/2004 J Smit 9 Pig Destroyer - Terrifyer
10/19/2001 A McKay 9.5 Pig Destroyer - Prowler in the Yard
3/13/2001 A Bromley 9 Pig Destroyer - 38 Counts of Battery
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