Speeed - Powertrip Pigs
Crash Music
Heavy Metal
11 songs (40'13")
Release year: 2006
Crash Music
Reviewed by Alex

Don’t get me wrong, I can spell the band’s name right. And, I am sure, so can the bandmembers as well. They are just having so much fun with the whole thing three Es could have easily been five.

Originally recorded in 1999, Powertrip Pigs just has this feel of a goof-off album. Just evidence those cool sunglasses in the band’s picture, quickly squashed techno beats in the first minute of an opener What Dya Want, song titles like China Town, Monkey Brains, Crystal Meth and electronic loops and samples popping up in the most unexpected places. On the other hand, this album shouts out the statement “we can rock too” considering the band boasts in its ranks too-many-projects-to-list guitarist Jack Frost and Annihilator outcast vocalist Aaron Randall.

No fast thrash Annihilator style is to be found on Powertrip Pigs. Speeed does not even get to thrash until Sin, towards the end of the album. Instead, when the band is serious, I can best describe the sound as straightforward heavy metal. If you enjoy your music acquired in the plain lead aisle, a la Jugulator, you can put up with much of Powertrip Pigs. Choppy heavy chords of What Dya Want and uncomplicated draw of Dragon and China Town, with the former having some decent flow and melody in the chorus, probably represent the album best. Trying to cover all bases, Speeed wants to make sure all modern metal attributes are present, giving us the gruff ballad in I Used to Believe, rebel rocker in Speed and fuzzed out stoner tune in Crystal Meth (title befitting). Add the semi-joke Zombies and loony Monkey Brains with many of the aforementioned samples scattered throughout Powertrip Pigs, and the album does not hold together as an album well at all. Powertrip Pigs stands more as a collection of heavy rock tunes haphazardly thrown together, than a cohesive album. At least, Christopher Cross’ Ride Like the Wind is decently covered.

There isn’t much negative I can say about the individual members’ performance. Jack Frost concentrates more on the riffing, but dashes the album with solos in spots, the better ones coming in on Speed and Sin. Ray Hartman is not required to drum fast, so he has time to be cool, like in the intro to Dragon. Aaron Randall has more aggressiveness in his voice than he ever did with Annihilator. Even though he sounds a little off in China Town and uses fast spoken words on the title track, there is something Halfordian with a Jon Oliva’s edge in his singing on the album. The rawer, but modern, production is doing its job to highlight Aaron’s voice.

Convincing themselves in the process of writing Powertrip Pigs, Speeed does not do a hell of lot for me. This is heavy metal for the sake of banging out a few tunes together. Given the fact Powertrip Pigs is a re-release on Crash there must be some following who wanted the album to see the light of day.

Killing Songs :
Dragon, Speed, Sin
Alex quoted 51 / 100
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