ohGr

Tracing Ogre’s trajectory
By MATT PARISH  |  December 5, 2008

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Skinny Puppy's Nivek Ogre has made the rounds for the better part of this decade as ohGr, with a more cut-and-paste approach to the electric misanthropy his old band pioneered. The project's third album, Devils in My Details (SPV), crawled out of its dank hole last month, and the group are hitting the Paradise this Saturday. Industrial pop metal has woven a crooked path through the goth underground and White Zombie schlock rock to its apparent final resting place in video games and horror-movie soundtracks. We'll take a sec here and trace Ogre's trajectory in the whole thing.

ohGr, “Feelin’ Chicken”
This track from Devils in My Details shows a playful side of Ogre, taking a hobbled Casiotone waltz and gathering a bunch of misfit synths and sound effects as well. "You're killing me with bacon, America!" begins the long, tricky rant. It's like a sinister Allen Ginsberg fronting Negativland.

Skinny Puppy, “Dig It”
Rewind to '86 and Skinny Puppy's influential first single's bizarre appropriation of bit-crushed guitars and what sounds like Run-DMC's busted TR-808. Ogre rasps "execute economic slave" while glassy synths cascade like shovels at a spooky graveyard — which happens to be where the video for this song takes place. Trent Reznor has openly admitted to ripping this off when he wrote "Down in It."

Ministry, “The Fall”
Skinny Puppy's direct æsthetic hand-me-down, Al Jourgensen was nearly in Ogre's post–Skinny Puppy project W.E.L.T., till they ran into contract troubles and had their name snatched up by a SoCal punk band. Ogre went on to form ohGr without Jourgensen, and the only W.E.L.T. song that ever surfaced, "Noreen," got chopped up and tossed into this epic downer from Ministry's Filth Pig in 1996.

Skinny Puppy, “Ugli”
Meanwhile, Skinny Puppy reunited for the gloomy Doomsday Festival in Dresden in 2000, and they've since released three records. This song, from 2007's Mythmaker (it eventually landed on the Saw V soundtrack), blends dusty techno IDM bass bombs and squiggly samples with scratchy metal guitars and the slogan "Jesus wants to be ugly."

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