Monday 15 August 2016

PIG To Release "The Gospel" on Sept. 9th

“The sound of this record might have changed but all the ingredients used in previous albums are the same: Healthy doses of discipline, desire, delectation and delight,” explains post-rock frontman Raymond Watts about his new album THE GOSPEL (Metropolis Records; release date September 9, 2016). “Or if one refers to the ingredients as the bricks and mortar of making music - the instruments of daily torture such as drums and synths that deliver it, or the ideas and the oxygen for the flame to fan it - then nothing much has changed… and yet everything has changed.”

While seemingly contradictory and in opposition to its own existence, this dichotomy of thought is the fuel that feeds the gritty yet orchestral environment within exists. Over a decade since the release of 2004’s Pigmatyr, THE GOSPEL is a rebirth of sorts, transforming the band’s original post-industrial incarnation to an almost entirely different, dark-rock animal. Opening with the tolling of church bells, the first single “The Diamond Sinners” is a swanky midnight dancefloor track whose video PopMatters premieres this week and can be viewed here:

The “Diamond Sinners” single EP (released last week, Sept. 5) contains the album track as well as three remixes from industrial stalwarts SKOLD, tweaker, and Marc Heal. “Each of them have done a fabulous job and brought their own special flavour and a brand new way to love thy neighbor,” Watts explains about each of the remixers. “I am so thrilled and grateful to these guys that have dipped their trotters in the trough.” Each version adds a new take on the track and reimagines it in different lights. “The tweaker Remix” benefits from “a tempo change and several pulsating synths”, while the “SKOLD Remix” finds “semi-tame Viking” Tim Skold isolating the hook which “slides engagingly into your ear before burrowing deeper and setting up home there for evermore.” Marc Heal’s “MC Lord of The Flies Remix” turns it into a dancefloor banger, by “digging up the carcass of , giving it the kiss of life and a little CPR… bless his cotton socks.”

THE GOSPEL treks through different textures and rhythms, crafting a diverse album that finds itself diving deeper into the alt-rock territory of Iggy Pop and the Stooges than it does of ’s earlier post-industrial material. From the whiskey-drenched swank and howl of “Found in Filth” to the insidious and slinky grind of “Toleration Or Truth” to the swirling sweaty driving anthem of “I’m So Wrong”, it’s an album that defies simple categorization, punctuated by Watts’ distinctively dark growl. Co-written with Marc Thwaite (Peter Murphy) and Z.Marr (Combichrist) who also co-produces.and does double-duty with programming, guitars and additional vocals, is rounded out with Watt’s former KMFDM bandmates En Esch on programming, guitars, vocals and Guenter Schulz on guitar.

The 10+ years between Pigmartyr and THE GOSPEL has been a metamorphosis of sorts for Watts. Among the highlights once he put into hibernation included writing music for fashion and film for Chloe, Marios Schwab, Halston, The Row and the sound design for the exhibit Punk: Chaos to Couture at NYC’s Metropolitan Music of Art. But the most ground-breaking and perhaps most rewarding was his collaboration with the late and immensely celebrated fashion icon Alexander McQueen who commissioned Watts and his old Psychic TV partner-in-crime John Gosling to embellish the serene instrumental track “Inside” (from 's Genuine American Monster album). The fluid soundtrack to McQueen's masterpiece, Plato's Atlantis, the show was reprised after McQueen’s untimely death as the finale of Savage Beauty, the posthumous retrospective that broke all records at The Metropolitan Music of Art in New York and Victoria & Albert Museum in London. “Working on Savage Beauty was (and I don't mean this lightly) absolutely fantastic,” he explains. “To work with so many talented people from so many different fields all in the pursuit of showing Alexander McQueen's genius (a word often overused but not in this case) was an honour and a joy.”

With THE GOSPEL ready for release in September, will be hitting the road for the “American Excess Tour” throughout North America this Fall (tour dates below). “This tour will be a coming together of the old(er) and the new,” Watts explains about the tour’s planned setlist. “I never really feel as safe on stage as when I have a great big bald German to my left (En Esch) and to my right, Guenter Schulz, probably one of Germany's more amiable and memorable exports… my idea of heaven, and I'm just glad they're on my side. Also in the trenches with me are Galen Waling [drummer for Julien-K, Left Spine Down and formerly 16 Volt] and Z.Marr.” Supporting the tour will be En Esch's industrial/mutant/disco/zombie/art rock solo project Peter Turns Pirate with Combichrist drummer Joe Letz adding his DJ skills between sets. Available for purchase exclusively on this tour is the vinyl-only release RISE AND REPENT, containing additional remixes of tracks from THE GOSPEL and previously unreleased material.

Watts concludes, “I am now just looking forward to getting our rag tag bag of miscreants into shape so they can give birth to a on show that is fat, healthy and singing for its supper when he's off the noose and live and loose this September and October…. digging up a backyard near you.”

is Raymond Watts (vocals, programming, guitars), Z. Marr (programming, guitars, additional vocals), and En Esch (programming, guitars, additional vocals). THE GOSPEL will be released on September 9, 2016 via Metropolis Records.

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