Singapore’s Psycho make their full-length debut with Pain Addict Pigs, a nine-track collection of horror metal made from a potent elixir of old-school death metal, black metal, and thrash metal. To make matters worse, the band taps into old-school punk, much like bands such as Impiety, Wormrot, and IronFist. The end result is harsh, primitive, and addictive as fuck.
After an obligatory intro (“The First Incantation”), Psycho gets down to business proper with the title track, which showcases the percussive prowess of Byron Kaz and the guitar antics of Byran J. J’s riffs are straightforward but catchy, strengthened even more by his layered solos, which submit noise to his whim. The solos are incredible in their simplicity—they may be straightforward, but they sure pack a punch. They’re the type of solos that will make you want to bust out the old air guitar just to jam along.
The pace is torn right out of thrash metal, with speed complemented by shredding noise and the dual vocals of shrieker Penny Torture and JY’s lower-end grunts. Switches in pace and massive breakdowns keep things fresh, as this band knows how to use both effectively. As for the vocals, both are good, but it’s Penny Torture’s wailing screams that are really impressive, such as on the tracks “All Are Dead” and “Mater Lachrymarum Mother of Tears.” On the latter track, her shrieks reminded me of King Diamond’s wilder wails, with Penny also doing her best witch laugh for added effect.
Despite the aggression, Psycho creates an overt catchiness that keeps listeners from becoming bored. As with most old-school death metal, the band uses short movie samples as intros to tracks such as “Meat Slit Grinder.” Some tracks also showcase the bass, with JY getting in some licks on the track “Meat Slit Grinder.”
Lyrically, the band taps straight into horror and gore movies for its inspiration. Tracks include “Dr. Satan” (from Rob Zombie’s House of 1,000 Corpses and The Devil’s Rejects) and “Mater Lachrymarum Mother of Tears” (from Dario Argento’s Mother of Tears). Other tracks feature typical death-metal topics, such as prostitution (“Revenge of the Raging Whore”), gore (“Lords of Slaughter”), and evil (“Demon Deathtrance”).
In my opinion, some of the best extreme music comes from Singapore. The simplicity, aggression, catchiness, and overt fun of the scene is addictive. Those interested in sampling some of this style would do well to get a copy of Psycho’s Pain Addict Pigs. You will not be disappointed.