December 27, 2020

You have to have full belief in your talents, capabilities and totally prepared to do it your way if you are going to make a name for yourself in the rock business when performing under the name of PIG and using quite extreme photographs to publicise your work! Londoner, Raymond Watts aka PIG started out in the mid-’80s and has developed quite a reputation in the field of industrial rock and has a wealth of recorded output behind him as a solo artist with his post-industrial rock band PIG. He was also a member of KMFDM and his reputation has allowed him to tour with the likes of Nine Inch Nails, Schaft, Schwein and Einstürzende Neubauten so this is an artist very well respected in the industrial rock scene.

To be truthful, I looked at the cover and as the music unfolded I was convinced that PIG was going to be a German band or quite possibly American so was quite surprised to read that Watts is from London but he appears to have had his formative years in Berlin sampling the dark, heady, decadent and risqué atmosphere of that unique and abstract city. Pig is a band that deals with the underbelly of society and the dark and menacing side to life that we all push to one side whilst still knowing it is out there and waiting for the perfect opportunity to pounce. Life is not easy, it is sleazy and dangerous and PIG delights in bringing this to your attention with a set of edgy songs that command your attention with their hypnotic beat, thumping bass and drums and all delivered with a sweltering Rammstein style intensity. PIG delivers deep vocals but they are clean, perfect and precise as he delivers his gospel with a delightful and rather wicked sardonic smile, rather like the jovial doctor who you just know is trying to hide the world’s biggest needle just out of your eyesight!

Pain Is God is a long album at 72 minutes and is post-industrial meets Neue Deutsche Welle and will appeal to fans from Nine Inch Nails through to Eisbrecher and all points in between and all will surely delight in a truly diverse, rocking album that is not just a maelstrom of noise or incessant cacophony but a true hard rocking album with a huge industrial beat and songs with recognisable melody and all delivered by a team of exceptionally talented musicians. There is plenty of programming for sure but real guitars, drums and keyboards make this an eminently listenable album and you will enjoy the songs and lyrical content too. This is not your run of the mill industrial record that relies on a mixture of thumping bass notes and jackhammer guitar that bludgeons senseless, for sure, you can take this approach with this album if you wish and crank it up loud for sure and it does work very well in this form too but there is a subtlety here and it would be a shame to miss out of the glorious themes and interplay that Watts introduces into his music. His current live band consists on En Esch, Guenter Schulz, Z. Marr and Galen Walling but I believe that the artists on the album are Esch (guitars/programming), Galen Waling (drums) and Steve White (guitars and programming) with Raymond Watts supplying vocals, keyboards, programming and guitars. There are also some great moments when backing singer Michelle Martinez gets involved and she brings another facet to the delivery. Great vocals and some quite excellent guitar over an intoxicating, danceable and surprising hook laden dark wave score make Pain Is God a rather remarkable industrial rock album that is so much more than the label/genre would suggest.

Search it out and be prepared for an album that delivers on so many levels, Pain is God maybe but based on this album then Pain is also Good!

Pain Is God track list

  1. Pain is God (4:32)
  2. Cursed (5:03)
  3. Rock ‘n’ Roll Refugee (4:29),
  4. Mobocracy (Militant Mix) (5:23)
  5. Badland (4:53)
  6. The Wages of Sin (6:27)
  7. Seed Of Evil (PIG Mix) (5:02)
  8. Deliverance (6:20)
  9. Hell To Pay In The USA (Piss & Vinegar Mix) (3:23)
  10. Drugged Dangerous & Damned (5:14)
  11. Kickin Ass (4:08)
  12. Confession (The Sacrificial Mix) (4:57)
  13. Sex & Death (Evil Edit) (5:12)
  14. Suffer No More (6:26)