Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2024
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Privacy Policy

Pyogenesis > P... or Different Songs in Different Sounds > Reviews
Pyogenesis - P... or Different Songs in Different Sounds

The best of Pyogenesis’ mid-career pop-punk plunge - 62%

lukretion, June 7th, 2022
Written based on this version: 2000, CD, Nuclear Blast (Digipak)

After the commercially successful, but artistically mediocre Mono, German band Pyogenesis almost folded. Tim Eiermann (guitars/vocals) who, together with Flo Schwarz (guitars/vocals), was the band’s main songwriter and co-frontman, quit shortly after the release of Mono, and so did drummer Wolle Maier. Bassist Roman Schönsee had instead left the band before Mono. Left alone, Flo Schwarz recruited a new line-up, with Tobias Morell joining the Pyogenesis’ ship behind the kit and Peter Rutard on guitars (bassist Mirza Kapidzic will join for the next full-length release, 2002’s She Makes Me Wish I Had a Gun. In the middle of this period of turmoil, Pyogenesis released P, a compilation collecting together their “greatest hits” from the previous four full-lengths. There is a twist, though: rather than putting together the previously released album versions, P is comprised of newly recorded versions of the songs, mostly with the new line-up but in a handful of cases with old band members too. Moreover, in most cases the songs either have been re-arranged, sometimes drastically, or are presented here in “unplugged”, sometimes live, versions.

The bulk of the songs on P are taken from Pyogenesis’ most recent two albums, Unpop and Mono. Two tracks are taken from the splendid Twinaleblood and three from the band’s debut Sweet X-rated Nothings. Inevitably, the music veers more towards the pop-punk style Pyogenesis embraced since Unpop than their doom/death/gothic beginnings. Even the songs taken from the first two albums are those that lent themselves more easily to a pop-punk reinterpretation. As such, you will find a lot of short tunes on this record, with straightforward melodies and simple harmonic structures (often max 3/4 chords per song). Although I am not a big fan of this type of music, I must admit that P does collect the best of the band’s pop-punk material. Songs like “Blue Smiley’s Plan” “Just Ironic”, “Will It Ever Be”, “Silver Experience”, “Would You Take” were some of the (few) songs that made Unpop and Mono listenable, if only barely. They are very catchy and memorable tunes, built around sweet melodies that combine in a crafty way melancholia and punk angst. The songs taken from the first two records are also good, showcasing more darkness and a gothic allure that, alas, the band by and large lost when they transitioned to punk music.

Not all songs included here are decent, though. The techno remix of the great “Love Nation Sugarhead” is awful, and so are the drum & bass renditions of “Fade Away” and “Would You Take”. Meanwhile, the unplugged version of “Rhapsodie in E” displays all the limits of singer Flo Schwarz, whose pitchy voice struggles significantly in the cleanest passages.

Nevertheless, P is a record that could be used as a way to survey Pyogenesis’ pop-punk period without having to wade through three full-length records of material in this style. It does collect the very best of the band’s pop-punk period and even if there is nothing taken from their 2002’s She Makes Me Wish I Had a Gun, that is not a big issue since there is very little worth remembering on that record. So overall if you are curious about Pyogenesis’ pop-punk plunge but cannot stomach to listen to a full album in that style, P may provide a suitable alternative for you. And even if you are a fan of Pyogenesis’ pop-punk period and already have Unpop and Mono, P may work for you as well, since it contains new versions of the songs from those records. As such, this is probably the only album from the band’s mid-period work that I feel like recommending beyond the strictest circle of hardcore Pyogenesis’ fans.