Interlude New Channel 6 doesn’t offer much respite from the record’s oppressive nature, as a newsreader reels off headlines about New Orleans being under water and LA being on fire, before taking an even darker turn as the anchor instructs us to ‘Be ashamed of everything that’s ever happened, it’s your fault’ while thick industrial builds below. It’s certainly not The One Show.
Head Cage – taken from the title of their previous record, although it didn’t appear – is like something straight from a horror movie as warped spoken-word ricochets against digital rain and pounding drums in hypnotic fashion. But it’s the eleven-minute finale that truly captures Pig Destroyer’s new penchant for noise.
With “field, ambient, noise and drum machine” provided by one Iggor Cavalera of Cavalera Conspiracy, Sound Walker’s initial bass pulses strike at the back of your cranium. The menacing, echoing vocals twist and buckle under the weight of the brooding, throbbing electronics, like listening to a lecture while falling down a rabbit hole. It’s not really music, more of an avant-garde experiment that would soundtrack an art installation of grainy war crime footage on loop. The vinyl version of the EP dedicates Side B entirely to this track, no doubt with many copies going unflipped after the first attempt as it’s an uncomfortable journey for those who just want to throw down. But it’s evidence, yet again, that Pig Destroyer are still one of the world’s most sadistic bands, and they don’t even need guitars to prove it.
For Fans Of: Napalm Death, Ministry, Nails
The Octagonal Stairway is out now via Relapse.
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