A couple weeks back ANIMAL New York posted a brilliant video entitled PUG DESTROYER featuring pugs taking lead vox on a death metal track. That alone would have been awesome enough, but then along came the actual Pig Destroyer and, as is their wont, the band took things to the next level. The result? A crazy limited edition T-shirt to benefit the good people at Pug Rescue of Florida -- a move that will almost certainly serve as fodder for conspiracy theorists who have long divined a pug-centric subtext to Pig Destroyer material such as, say, “Rotten Yellow” or “Starbelly.” Whether we'll ever see a snout-less, squish-faced upstart trotting into the sound booth at PDHQ to give Katherine Katz or Richard Johnson a run for their guest vocal money remains an open question, but in light of recent developments I reached out to Blake Harrison with a few related patience-trying, pretty much asinine queries, which he handled with typical aplomb and good humor. A condensed version of that chat follows below.
Animal New York is clearly excited that the band reached out after their Pug Destroyer video went viral. Are you guys animal lovers? (Excepting pigs, naturally.)
I am, at least. My favorite is a French Bulldog named Brutus that I dog-sit. He gets so excited he pees when he sees me.
Any actual pug owners in Pig Destroyer?
I used to own a pug named Captain Gingersnaps.
Is there any concern that by introducing what is generally agreed to be the most adorable dog breed to the Pig Destroyer merchandising universe might irreversibly soften the band’s image? If so, is there a plan in place to release something uber-extreme or exceptionally ugly to counter this design in the near future?
No, not at all. Everyone knows we're big softies. We will however release something of a repugnant nature. Pun intended.
After the Pug Destroyer video was there any discussion in the band about bringing on a pug to occupy the role typically filled by a bassist or perhaps as an assistant for your work?
No, we have a human member of Hatebeak in the band [and] we didn't want to insult his clearly superior intellect and level of creativity.
This T-shirt design is obviously based on the traditional purebred pug. Do you have any thoughts on the mixed breeds currently gaining popularity -- e.g. puggles, chuggles, frugs, japugs, porgie-poos?
Has the transition from Pig to Pug been at all difficult? After all, these are very different adversaries, the tactics to destroy one presumably being totally different to what is necessary to destroy the other. For one, with pugs you’ve got to will yourself beyond the adorableness barrier -- no small feat…
Pigs and pugs are adversaries? Who knew? We will destroy all pigs [and] pugs, too -- although the cuteness of the pug is undeniable.
Which of these monikers, to your mind, best suits the pug: Terrifyer, Prowler in the Yard, or Natasha.
Prowler In The Yard. You know, like shitting and pissing the yard.
Were there any particular designer breed/punk rock collaborations that inspired you back when you were coming up?
I like Mosh Pit Bull
Finally, what message do you hope kids in the scene today take away from this shirt?