Pig Iron - 'IV' Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     February 23, 2013    
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An accomplished recording by Pig Iron.

Pig Iron is a UK-based band and unsurprisingly this is their fourth release (reminiscent of Toto´s album naming approach). However, Pig Iron´s sound is at the other end of the music spectrum and is pure hard rock with bluesy roots. Their credentials include being the biker band of choice as proved at last year´s Bulldog Bash festival. Harder rock publications such as KERRANG!, Classic Rock and Metal Hammer are also singing the praises of the band´s thunderous performance in the studio and live.

The band consists of Johnny Ogle on vocals and harmonica (sprinkled throughout the album), new guitarist Dan Edwards, Hugh Gilmour on bass and Joe Smith on drums. In addition, Hugh Gilmour picks up organ duties throughout. Also of note, this album is the first release of Hear No Evil Records which is Cherry Red´s new hard rock and metal specialist label.

The quality is definitely there on this album; songs of note are ´Horseshoes And Hand Grenades´ (the title, I presume being a bit of a nod to ´Handbags And Glad Rags´) which has a tremendous guitar and harmonica duel at the end. The standout track, ´Good Man, Poor Man´ comes next and is a slow burning blues piece very much in the ´Bad Company´ by Bad Company vein. The slow build-up of the constant acoustic guitar accompaniment is interrupted with a crashing electric guitar riff coming in two and half minutes into the song. Instead of a predictable blistering solo, Dan Edwards delivers a tone rich and really slowed down solo which strangely works really well leading on to the final chorus with the vocals become more frenetic.

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´Chapter 6´, the sixth track on the album is a jangling acoustic guitar and tribal drum number – a short and sweet instrumental and introduces ´Bootlace Noose´ with its very menacing extended guitar riff and a catchy verse (and chorus for that matter). The ´Curse Of An Aching Heart´ is a bluesy and maybe Led Zeppelin inspired track with a lot of light and shade for a short three and half minute track. Pig Iron do have the knack on this album to know when less is more and when to throw in the kitchen sink. ´Low Grade Man´, the last full song on the album, is one of the kitchen sink moments; a brooding guitar and harmonica riff providing a good backdrop to Johnny Ogle´s best vocal performance on the album. The chorus lets rip and this time to add to an extended guitar solo, there is a screaming saxophone provided by James Knight.

´IV´ is an accomplished recording by Pig Iron and will surely keep its existing fan base happy and maybe interest those from slightly different parts of the rock universe.

Rob McKenzie

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