‘The Plot Against Future Plans’, the brand new mini album from local noise junkies Pigs as People, brings us all down to Mandela Hall for its release.
The stage turns black, we are now to assume that Pigs as People are stepping forward to produce what we have all been waiting for, a damn noisy show. Eerie, manic, discordant noises deepen the mood and we are left in total darkness. The crowd are excited and the sudden thunder of drums from drummer Wilson, takes over the sound.
Finally we see the band in all their glory, backed up by the filthiest of bass tones and singer Chris Leckey’s signature voice, this song is called ‘Rooks’. Shouting “We’re Pigs as People, how the fuck are you guys?” Pigs as People have arrived.
Next up we have ‘Bleeder’, a song filled with hypnotic, repetitive riffs and unfortunately, the crowd at this point are doing no justice to the bands insane pace. Typical of Belfast’s most annoying habit, everyone is simply standing around staring at the band, with only a handful of people literally throwing themselves into the music.
Now to my personal favourite song of the set ‘Rashida’. This one is dedicated to Team RKT and gets off to a punchy start. Draped in red and purple lighting, the band belt out deeply punk influenced riffs, laced in noise rock goodness. Wilson’s drums are distinguished and hard hitting, making this a brilliantly loud and impacting anthem.
‘Rashida’ is a vocally attractive song. Guitarist and backing vocalist Stevie adds a deliciously soft and whiny vocal that perfectly complements the bitter screams of Leckey throughout. Further to this, there is a worthy back and forth between the two that simply adds to the songs fluctuating rhythm.
Being welcomed to the stage is drummer Mark of local band ‘Two Glass Eyes’. As a Melvin’s fan, the prospect of two drummers on stage has me weak at the knees. Wilson and Mark destroy the drums with their hectic display of ‘After the Destroyer’, almost fighting for each cymbal and snare hit in their breathtaking performance. With intense chainsaw style bass and sharp experimental guitar, I am impressed. However, this brief song seems to be over in a heartbeat and we see the exit of second drummer Mark.
As we delve deeper into the set, we reach ‘Foundling’ a massive song with a massive chorus. In honour of ‘Emerald Armada’, the band is appropriately dipped in green lighting.
Finally, a mosh pit. The very thing a band this heavy deserves. The crowd are not only head banging, but releasing their entire bodies into the madness. It creates a powerful sense of insanity that beautifully reflects the band’s image. It appears now the punters are ready to go as crazy as the band.
However just as the atmosphere is peaking, the band exits the stage. Having played none of their classic songs, I have a hunch that the band is not entirely finished. ‘Chanting ‘one more Stevie, one more’ the crowd are as eager as the band to hear what else Pigs as People have to give. ‘Those Hearts Have Rocks‘, a slower, quieter song, leads us into the encore. Bellowing drums, melodic softness and quiet desperation makes this song possibly the rawest song I’ve heard of Pigs as People. I am overwhelmed by the softer side of the band and the crowd response agrees with me.
Feedback, smoke machines and strong lights, we are now joined once again by the full band. Without hesitation, an ear-splitting deranged tune that encourages yet another mosh pit from the crowd. I must admit that I admire the band’s passion for their work. They must be aware that their sound is not entirely suited to everyone and yet they wear it with pride. Belting every song out as if they had never played it before. I also admire the bravery it took for the band to perform a sixteen song set. Their mammoth set is bound to have taken every inch of their strength and talent to produce and they did it, with ease.
However, I must admit, after a while it was hard for me to concentrate on which song I was listening to. Having taken in their brand new mini album, I was having trouble trying to process the songs and remembering which tracks were which. Being familiar with most of the band’s second set, it was even hard to maintain interest in the band’s well known favourites. Had the two sets have been separate; it would have had a lot more impact. That being said it was still a wicked show, from a collective of passionate music men.
‘Big lads with big riffs’, they certainly do not disappoint. ‘The Plot Against Future Plans’ is available for download on Bandcamp on a ‘name your price’ basis, so if you’re a fan. I recommend you get yourself a copy. Ciara King, GiggingNI.com