The Tiger & Me
The Drifter’s Dawn
In the endless striving for an open, honest, unaffected and authentic sound, there is a chance to be left by the wayside as dozens of combos ply the folk-rock route so beloved in Australia. The Tiger & Me are in no such danger. Not only do they have genuine live passion and versatility, but also qualities many of these other bands lack: focus and work ethic.
Recorded live by Steve Schram, this natural approach is fitting for the sometimes drifting sometimes driving acoustic guitars, propulsive rhythms and deft vocal mingling of singers Ade Vincent, Jane Hendry and Tobias Selkirk. With a welcome disregard for genre, the sextet play whatever works live, and as so many other bands do, end up recording what gets a response. It’s when they venture away from that default situation that things get interesting, though. Songwriting chops are revealed on the gentle, growing lilt of The Door Swung, and ethereal beauty of A Want That You Wouldn’t, both redolent with subtleties that would get overlooked by a crowd ready for the upbeat singalongs. These, like opener Dance With The Devil, are where things get a little more cosmopolitan and audience responses tend to get divided. The bouncing pop of single Pantomime bears little resemblance to anything else on the album, but that’s more a demonstration of writing breadth than any misleading gesture.
With a musical landscape littered with acoustic guitarist and foreign rhythms, it’s refreshing to find an Australian group who know when to rein in the jams, work as a multitalented collective and who know how to sift through a sprawling range of styles to come up with a coherent and punchy album.
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