October 28, 2022

Raymond Watts aka PIG is a major innovator in the world of industrial rock with a career all the way back to the mid-’80s being a one-man recording outfit calling in regular guests and collaborators to bring his far-reaching concepts to life. He was also a member of KMFDM, toured with the likes of Nine Inch Nails and Einstürzende Neubauten and worked with the great and the good across all musical divides so his credentials in the world of industrial rock are impeccable. This is a man and musician who makes uncompromising rock and is always true to his principles and damn the consequences.

Watts’ new album rapidly follows on from the lengthy and totally absorbing Baptise Bless & Bleed EP and is his first full release since 2020’s Pain Is God. Under the pseudonym of PIG, Watts produces a highly infectious, intense and uncompromising rock with amazing beats and rhythms that incorporate so many styles from Neue Deutsche Härte (NDH), through glitzy glamour, darkwave and even touches of danceable electro but all with a pulsating, throbbing and totally monstrous attack that renders you senseless. As with so many albums these days, The Merciless Light was recorded and produced during the dreaded lockdown and quarantine periods enforced upon us all due to COVID but it seems this strange period of free time has allowed PIG to create a magnum opus of epic dimensions that glowers, glares and overwhelms in equal proportions. It very much takes its direction from NDH with several similarities to what Rammstein are doing and this is especially seen on the opening track No Yes More Less which, if you didn’t know any better, you would automatically assume it was Rammstein! You must also remember that Watts spent many years in Berlin soaking in the atmosphere, hedonistic lifestyle and vibrant music scene so NDH runs in his blood.

Watts has again turned to his long-time colleagues in En Esch and Steve White with Jim Davies (Pitchshifter/The Prodigy) also joining the team and he has brought his own dynamic and talents into the mix. Again, the singer Michelle Martinez adds her supreme vocals to the proceedings with what is know as the PIG choir supplying some great vocals backing harmonies which is something that you would not expect from a metal themed industrial rock album. This then is the real give away as PIG is far, far more than an industrial rock act as there is just about every rock form incorporated not the sound of the band with some fabulous metal guitar, great riffs and hard grooves combining to give an industrial electro vibe to everything.

The Merciless Light is another album to play loud so that the beats meld into your brain but you also tune into the musical interplay too as these are fabulous musicians creating something new and vital. This is music that informs, advises and challenges all at the same time and is a paradoxical mixture of styles that should not work together but Watts and his ever-reliable team delight in the impossible and they do what very few others can do by fusing disparate styles into one cohesive whole. To ignore or dismiss the industrial musings of PIG is to deprive yourself of a real musical genius and a music that is really beyond description but is a sheer joy to behold and revel in.

If you want to hear something different but totally satisfying then check out the works of PIG and most definitely give time to savour the delights held within Merciless Light.

The Merciless Light

  1. No Yes More Less (4:39)
  2. Veni Vidi Vici (4:34)
  3. Feed The Wound (3:01)
  4. Speak Of Sin (4:18)
  5. Limbo (3:56), Glitz Krieg (3:58)
  6. Sugar My Pill (3:36)
  7. The Dark Room (3:13)
  8. The Merciless Light (5:34)
  9. Tarantula (5:47)
  10. Obliteration Liberation (5:22)
  11. The Judas Chair (4:56)

PIGThe Merciless Light is out now via Metropolis Records