Released: 2016, Nuclear Blast
Reviewer: Aaron Yurkiewicz
Listening to any Pain record, it can be hard to reconcile that this is the same Peter Tägtgren who wrote seething odes to Satan like “God is a Lie” and “Inferior Devotees”. Pain has always been a musical alter ego for the guy, allowing for more diverse creative pursuits than the constraints of Hypocrisy would ever allow. Industrial and electronic elements have never been strangers to the Pain sound, but it would appear Tägtgren’s collaboration with Till Lindemann on last year’s SKILLS IN PILLS album has had more than a casual influence on the songwriting for COMING HOME.
COMING HOME sounds a lot like like a hybrid successor to SKILLS AND PILLS and YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE. Lots of big, booming Rammstein-lite pulsations, adolescent hypersexual overtones and over the top arrangements straight from the Phil Spector handbook; it’s an intentional overload of the senses. It’s also hella catchy. Whether it’s the countryfried twang of “Designed to Piss You Off”, the oddly sentimental title track, or the maddeningly singable “Call Me”, it’s not at all difficult for these tunes to get trapped in your cerebral cortex. Say what you will about Pain’s musical approach, but it’s hard to argue about Tägtgren’s ability to write a slick tune.
Chances are you’re probably already decided as to whether or not Pain’s musical portfolio is your cup of tea, and COMING HOME won’t sway that inclination. The commercial grade veneer slapped on these new tunes may also push some Pain’s advocates to the fringe, but at the end of the day – a good song is a good song. And COMING HOME is surprisingly full to the brim with them.