Known Johnson

August 28, 2005

Voivod’s “Piggy” D’Amour dead from cancer

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tom @ 9:47 am

I’m really sad to read this:

VOIVOD guitarist Denis “Piggy” D’Amour passed away Friday night (August 26) at approximately 11:45 p.m. due to complications from advanced colon cancer – so advanced that the disease had spread to his liver. D’Amour slipped into a coma Thursday night and died less than 24 hours later in the palliative care unit of a Montreal hospital, surrounded by family and friends. He was 45 years old.

While I don’t really listen to them much anymore Voivod was one of those “turning point” bands for me. They were such an oddity at a time when rock music was all about image – hair, leather, cars, and girls. Voivod was writing complex, sometimes abrasively weird music, the subject matter of which I can only guess most of the time, but it’s all freak-out sci-fi. For whatever reason, Voivod forced me to ask more of the music I was listening to – once I heard their odd, shifting textures and manic time-signature shifts, not to mention Denis “Snake” Belanger’s choked, nasal voice (and, non-musically, really cool, low-fi graphics from drummer Michel “Away” Langevin,) nothing could be the same. And Piggy was one of those guitarists who didn’t dazzle with pyrotechnical displays of skill but instead relied on really unusual guitar figures and sounds to make his presence known. His unusual choices in sounds, and this band, were more influential than it may seem – going as far into the mainstream as to inform the structure and sounds of Foo Fighters’ “All My Life” from 2002’s One on One. If you like metal at all and somehow don’t know Voivod, you’ve probably enjoyed the influence of Voivod and not even known it. Do something about that today.

Voivod: Inner Combustion (5.22mb) from 1989’s Nothingface.

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