Posted On 12 Oct 2016
Their latest album The Gospel was released on September 9th via Metropolis Records and it’s been getting over-the-top great reviews. REVOLVER calls it “a collection of cautionary and caustic songs from which this slice of vice” while Rock N Roll Fables heaps the following praise: “Take a dab of Depeche Mode’s Violator, a smidge of Marilyn Manson’s The Pale Emperor, a little of Nick Cave’s “Red Right Hand” and..you know what? Forget that! is only comparable to and the latest from the Lord of the Lard is no exception and certainly an album that stands on its own within the upper echelon of rawk.”
Mastermind Raymond Watts was also the man behind the music for the late great fashion icon Alexander McQueen‘s iconic and massively popular Savage Beauty exhibition at the Metropolitan Music of Art in NYC.
Learn more about PIG in the following All Access interview:
Thanks for your time! Now that we are entering the fall of 2016, what are some words you would use to describe this year? What have been some of the highlights for the band?
It’s been an extraordinary last twelve months. Having not worked on <PIG> for some years it was surprising how quickly I fell back into working on it. <PIG> has always been a demanding and jealous lover but we got back into our endless tango of tantrums and traumas without missing a beat (literally). And while it was great to be back in the trenches with my old cohort of En Esch and Guenter Schulz it was fabulous to have a new transfusion of blood from Z.Marr and Mark Thwaite who worked on The Gospel with me.
Growing up, did you all always want to be musicians? Can you recall your earliest musical memories?
My dad was always writing things for his amateur choir and such, so music was always around but the stuff that really left a mark on me was I suppose hearing the glam rock of T.Rex, Mud, Slade and Bowie in the early 70’s… and of course when punk came along in ’76-’77 it was time to get thrown out of school and leave the suburbs for the squalor of the city…
How did PIG first come together? How did you come up with your band name?
I was in West Berlin in ’86, and had written the first <PIG> material which some independent labels wanted. I needed a name and had always related to the pig and how it seemed to get a pretty bad press for such a fine and intelligent creature. How its name was associated with anything perceived as negative: dirt, chauvinism, smells, bad cops, obese people etc. etc. seemed to resonate somehow. That along with the diaspora of the dispossessed made <PIG> a suitable hook to hang the whole hog on.
How would you describe your sound to someone who had never heard it before?
That’s quite challenging as <PIG> covers quite a few genres from ambient to metal via jazz, swamp rock, blues, orchestral and old school industrial.
You just released your latest album, “The Gospel.” Can you talk about the inspiration for this collection?
The Gospel is mainly based on material I wrote with Mark Thwaite and Z.Marr that we started on three or four years ago. It didn’t work out then as we were on different sides of the Atlantic and for all the miracles of file sharing it’s not a patch on the reality of collaborating in the studio. When Z.Marr left Combichrist he jumped on a plane to London and ten days later The Gospel was pretty much done. The album pretty much wrote itself. I didn’t over think it too much but just let the words come out. I didn’t want to sacrifice ‘good’ material on the altar of wanting it to be the ‘best’ which is often a trap when you haven’t done something for a while.
How’s your Fall 2016 tour been going so far? Where are you excited to perform at next?
This tour has been absolutely fantastic. Having Galen Waling on drums with Z.Marr on keyboards, the aforementioned Guenter Schultz and the exceptional En Esch is a joy. It’s as it ever was but completely different. To see and hear people’s reactions across the country is both humbling and fabulous.
Who are some of your favorite artists and what bands continue to inspire you and your music? Who would you still love to work with in the future?
Too many too mention but I love Charlie Clouser’s work, and would love to get Alan Wilder in to work some of his magic.
When you aren’t performing, working in the studio, what do you like to do for fun? How do you unwind from it all?
Love hanging out with my two sons, watching their sports events and such. When they’re not around I’ve recently reconnected with going to the theatre and walking in the early morning.
At the end of the day, what do you hope is the message of your music? What do you hope listeners take away from your songs?
I would hope first and foremost they enjoy it. I’m long past the ‘I’ve suffered for my art and now it’s your turn’ stage. If it steers them in the direction of other genres then so much the better.
Is there anything else that you would like to share with our readers about yourself or your music?
There seems to be so much music around vying for attention now days … and the catalogue of <PIG> is a long, winding and sometimes obscure road … but I would hope that people find their way too it courtesy of The Gospel and what it commands (and demands!).