Twin Tigers – Death Wish

twin-tigers-death-wish

Rating: ★★★ · ·

It seems like forever since we last heard from Twin Tigers; it’s been almost 3 years since we first got our hand on Gray Waves.  But, the wait was pretty well worth it, as Death Wish sees the band holding onto some of their old sound, while still forging ahead with new ground.   There’s still that expansive wall of noise, though the band has refined it a bit, allowing their pop sensibility to completely shine through with a darker edge.

The brooding sensation from the band is still intact, witnessed by the impending doom that opens Death Wish on “Racecar.”  Atmospheric noise opens before the drums roll heavily through the mix.  Vocals have a dark dosage of echo-y distance placed atop, which provides listeners with the sensation of impending doom.  I fully expected the band to blast off into a wall of noise at some point, yet they don’t; I like the use of restraint. However, almost immediately they flip things on you, giving you the poppiest song they might have written to this day.  Matthew Rain’s vocals seemingly hang in the hair, while the off-kilter drumming is blended with dashes of electronics.  It’s a sign of things to come, at least as the album is considered.

“Opana” opens with an electro pulse, before the song takes on a completely macabre throb to it.  It’s a sensation that seems designed to mess with your head, as shattering noise occasionally bursts through the background.  But, Rain enters with a vocal swagger that displays the new territory where the group aims to venture towards: pop meets death.  My personal favorite on the album comes when Twin Tigers unleash “Death Wish,” the album’s title track.  Aside from the first track, it’s the only other tune where I really feel like I can expect a barrage of noise in the live setting.  The sharp-edged guitars and the drum work, along with Rain’s voice, seem primed for a full on explosion.  Perhaps this was the middle ground where the group thought they could best excel, and they’re right; the song is not entirely noisy, yet not entirely pop–therein lays one of the problems that exists on Death Wish.

Too often the band finds their record treading that middle ground between heavy-handed noise rockers and pop-experimentalists. While it makes the brighter moments on the record stand out strong, it also lets a little too much light on the weaker spots such as “Transition.”  Of course, this is just an opinion, as I’m curious as to where the future of the band goes from here.  They’re straddling a bit between two genres, and it’s successful at times, and not so much at others.  It makes Death Wish a great listen, but also one that’s perplexing, especially to old fans.   If you need a light at the end of the tunnel, make sure you make it all the way to “Holiday.” It flirts with the band’s balance between their musical hearts, sprawling with sharp guitar chords, soft vocals and that explosive energy the band harnesses for too long on the record; it also closes beautifully. Here’s to hoping that Twin Tigers find that perfect mixture, as the majority of this album shows they’re still a band you’ll want on your playlists.

Hypnotic Electro-Pop from pacficUV

Pacific-UV-Pacific-UvI always have this preconceived idea about Athens, Georgia, at least in referencing the city’s musical history.  But, with bands like Twin Tigers and now pacificUV coming into their own, perhaps my ideas will begin to change a bit.  This tune has a hypnotic electro beat that just grooves the whole way through.  You’ll also find some rad interplay between male and female vocalists that really ups the ante on mass appeal.  The band has a new record titled After the Dream You Are Awake, which comes out on May 14th via Mazarine Records…but if you can’t wait, they have a sampler HERE with a few new tracks, as well as some of their other career retrospective tunes.

Welcome Back Twin Tigers

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Man it seems like it’s been way too long since we last heard from Athens based noise rockers Twin Tigers.  Since the release of their incredible 2010 album Grey Waves, it seems like the band has been extremely quiet while recording their follow up.  Well the wait is over and the band is sharing a brand new song today called “Racecar”.  It has the same noise/fuzz element to it, but with an added touch of new wave beats thrown in that we have never really seen from the band.  Interesting and delightful all at the same time.

New album Death Wish will be available on April 9th via Old Flame Records.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/TwinTigersRacecar.mp3]

Download: Twin Tigers – Racecar [MP3]

Show Preview: We Are Scientists @ Emos (10/28)

Date Thursday, Oct 28th
Location Emos
Doors 900p
Tickets $13 from Ticketweb

We like We Are Scientists, and we’re pretty sure that the band is going to put on one hell of a show for you all, but the real reason to get excited has to be the opening band Twin Tigers.  They blew us away at SXSW, and their album. Gray Waves, was about as perfect a debut as you can get.  Their feedback squalls, wrapped tightly around pop sensibility, is sure to give you something to remember.  It’s not often that we fawn over a band, but this is one I’ve been all about, so you can guarantee that I’ll be there in attendance.  Also, Rewards will open up the whole evening, so you have yet another good reason to get yourself to Emos.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/03-Everyday.mp3]

Download: Twin Tigers – Everyday [MP3]


New Tunes from Gift Horse

During SXSW I opted to check in on another fabulous scene, that of Athens, GA.  I went to catch an amazing set from Twin Tigers, but I was also pleased to get a ridiculously enthusiastic performance from Gift Horse.  It was freezing cold (ya’ll remember that Saturday), but the energy from the stage kept me warm, albeit for just a little bit.  You’ll find a clever balance between soft and heavy in this tune “Plastic People,” which generally bodes well for the group.  You can catch more tunes from the band when they release their album Mountain of Youth on May 4th.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/05-Track-5-1.mp3]

Download: Gift Horse – Plastic People [MP3]

Twin Tigers – Gray Waves

Rating: ★★★★½

It’s hard nowadays for a debut album to really blow people out of the water, unless you’ve had success and backing from various media outlets.  Twin Tigers have had a mild amount of press in that regard, but odds are the release of their album Gray Waves will have more people clamoring to find as much information on the group as possible.  This record moves back and forth between several musical spectrums, often times within the same song; in following this formula the group has constructed one of the most creative straight-ahead rock records in recent memory.

From the moment you click play on your stereo, you get the feeling as if you’re in for something entirely special; the discordant noise sets an ambient tone before the drums and feedback squall shatter the sonic setting on “Passive Idol.” But, just as you expect a blistering number, Twin Tigers pull back, choosing to create a more melodious moment for listeners.  Mathew Rain’s vocals seem to have some sort of echo in them, which makes him seem both haunting and dangerous.  Either way, you can’t help but to fall into this record from the get go.

“Red Fox Run” recalls some of the mid-to-late career albums of Sonic Youth, in so much as it maintains a balance between using appropriate melody and blistering noise.  Movement within the song is hard to ignore, and you can tell that thought went into every detail of the way the song unfolds.  Similarly, “Everyday” grabs you right from the get go, using a summery underlying hook that borders on bubble pop.  Still, waves of guitar noise remain in the background, and the chorus provides the perfect amount of angst that is necessary for pure rock songs.  All this before the song blasts into another direction towards the ending, only to return to the hook featured at the beginning.

Yet, Twin Tigers are not a one-trick pony they refuse to rely upon their Sonic Youth tendencies, or Rain’s howling Jesus and the Mary Chain vocals.  They’re capable of almost anything here, as “Gray Waves” suggests.  If they ended at the midpoint, this would easily be a great song of typical indie pop such as Deerhunter, but they push beyond influences, forging new ground all on their own, as witnessed by the darker vocal performance by Rain near the end.

An aside that is necessary here is the performance of Dougie Crump.  A steady drummer is a definite must if you’re going to construct mini-suites mid-song.  You’ve got to have someone who can keep everyone on track by providing the perfect rhythm; Young does this spectacularly.  On top of that, his work is magnificent in its own regard; his drum fills alone really flesh out the group’s sound as a whole. Cheers to that Richard.

All in all, Gray Waves is a remarkably refreshing debut.  Angular guitars cut and feedback throughout the entirety of the record, all the while Rain tries to utilize his vocals to keep a hint of melody to the core of Twin Tigers.  Not once can you deny the creativity and vibrance of this young band; they’re here to take their influences and build a world all their own.  And, who knows, the way they cut and paste the sonic collage here shows they just might tear that world all to pieces, but odds are you’ll still love every minute of it.

[audio:http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/03-Everyday.mp3]

Download: Twin Tigers – Everyday [MP3]

New Tunes from Twin Tigers

twintigers_interviewWe interviewed Twin Tigers a little bit ago just because we were really excited about the Athens band.  Now, their album, Gray Waves, is nearing its official street date of March 2nd.  We’ve got another great track to throw your way here, which will hopefully have you just as excited for the release as we are.  This tune hits hard, then settles down a bit before it unleashes more fury.  Happy Thursday.

[audio: http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/01_Passive_Idol.mp3]

Download: Twin Tigers – Passive Idol [MP3]

ATH Interviews: Twin Tigers

twintigers_interviewLittle is known about Hotlanta band Twin Tigers other than us knowing that we dig their tunes.  That music loving side of us therefore lead us to believe that you guys should really get to know this band and learn a little about them.  So way back during Fun Fest, Twin Tigers made it through town and we had the chance to speak with frontman Mathew Rain about his band.  I know, leave it to us to take our sweet time posting this one, but we hope you find it worthwhile.  Follow the jump for full interview with Twin Tigers.

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Voxtrot @ Mohawk (11/7)

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Date 11/7/09
Location Mohawk
Doors 900p
Tickets $11 from Frontgate

Fun Fest aftershows are pretty slim pickins this year, but Saturday night at Mohawk has a nice little lineup of big name local talent.  Your outdoor stage will feature Voxtrot and Octopus Project while indoor talent includes Coathangers, Twin Tigers, Walter Schiriefels, and Jazzus Lizard (Jesus Lizard jazz tribute band).  Should be a good time if you’re still standing after day one of Fun Fest.

[audio: http://austintownhall.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/01-Berlin-Without-Return…-1.mp3]

Download: Voxtrot – Berlin, Without Return [MP3]

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