Album Review: The Tiger & Me-The Drifters Dawn

So this is the second album by Melbourne act The Tiger And Me, and they describe it as highly anticipated. Maybe it is in Melbourne, but if I was told by someone that I should be on the edge of my seat waiting for it to arrive, I would be quite disappointed in the person that gave me that information, and possibly punch them in their nose.

Unfortunately, the whole 44 minutes and 56 seconds of this album bored the shit out of me. There are some cool harmonies, and the use of instruments like the fiddle, Theremin and the accordion were a nice touch, but that is kinda it.

The band features three lead vocalists, so I would say that every song sounds like it is from a different act, but there is one thing that stays the same, and that is a slow and boring droning of instruments.

The opening track Dance With The Devil starts quite quickly with the male vocalists deep voice and an acoustic guitar. You expect it to build, into something big and massive, but unfortunately it doesn’t really happen. The female vocalist takes over, and a string quartet kicks the guitar out of the way, with a tamborine quite prominently leaving its mark in the background. There are some moments where the vocals seem a bit amateur and pitchy too. But it seems like any band that wants to call themselves indie these days just has to do an extremely average job, but play on that factor.

I understand what the band are trying to do (to an extent) and I think it may be something very similar to Sydney family band Tigertown, and it has nothing to do with the name. Both bands are similar in a way, as they have mixed gender lead vocalists and attempt to put angelic harmonies with slow and emotional instrumentation. Tigertown simply do it better. It is hard to explain, but maybe it is just the band chemistry that lets The Tiger And Me down.

The second track on this LP is called Pantomime, and it is happier, I guess. Well, it is meant to be happy, but it still doesn’t put a smile on my face. It is more upbeat, which is a better way to put it. A jumpy bass line, and a cheery rhythm by the drums. The string instruments feature again, and kill the momentum, as do the fairly generic and typical (possibly obligatory to these guys) harmonies.

Waltz #3 starts off in a really ‘built up’ manor for the intro, then slowing right down quite abruptly. Why, I ask? It is confusing and out of place. The bands facebook page describes this song to fit them perfectly. A marching band type all in chorus with a piano accordion isn’t really a description of anything in existence. It is an interesting song structure, with the chorus, followed by two verses, and concluded by the chorus again, which is a positive, but is possibly the only faintly original aspect of the song.

The band also say on facebook that the power of the band is not truly experienced until you see them live, so who knows, maybe my opinion will change when and if I was to see them perform in person. However, this album is quite weak, unoriginal, and dull. The Tiger And Me have potential, no doubt, they just need to find a way to bring it out.


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