One Bad Pig sings that old-time gospel with a safety pin through its nose

One Bad Pig was never considered one of the “cool kids” of Christian rock during its tenure in the late 1980s and early 1990s. By its own admission, the band was not part of the punk culture it came together to reach through music; it was a ministry first. Not that the band’s artistry was unaccomplished, but its members did not live for the music nor live the lifestyle that usually accompanied its mix of punk and thrash.

Fast forward to 2016, where punk and thrash have established a hold on two successive generations who consider Sex Pistols and Green Day “classic rock” yet fervently listen to their musical offspring all the same. So why not get the sounder of swine back together and make some new music? Love You To Death is the result, and the band has re-assumed its music mantle twenty-five years after its last studio release without missing a squeal.

Love You To Death is not a bunch of old guys trying to relive lost youth by rocking out when their ability to do so has long since given out. Only singer Carey Womach’s not screaming very often stylistically separates the record from previous works such as Swine Flew. The sense of humor is still there, as is the band’s penchant for getting quite serious; an example is “Heads Will Roll” which unflinchingly tackles Christian martyrdom at ISIS’ bloody hands. Underneath it all is a very underrated band led by Paul Q-Pek’s blistering guitar work. The man can flat-out shred.

At its heart, One Bad Pig is a very traditional gospel band. The lyrics are direct; the call to Christ prevalent throughout. It is easy to picture most all of the band’s lyrics translating well to your average Sunday evening southern gospel concert. Musically, probably not, unless the audience was extraordinarily broadminded. One Bad Pig forever dispels the myth that you have to live it to play it. Its members do anything but live it, yet they play it very, very well.

The record is available at CD Baby.