This past summer, I had a horrible job coordinating summer youth groups during their stay on my college campus. I was overstressed, underpaid, and got to continuously tell clients unsettling news about how none of their keys worked or that their dorm halls had somehow been infested with fleas over the weekend. As I delivered such news with a desperate please-don’t-shoot-the-messenger attitude and then made various angry grunting noises at my desk, I dreamt of complex escape rituals that involved either hibernation in Alaska and/or blowing up the school with napalm made from orange juice like the space monkeys in Fight Club. The only thing that allowed me to repent was driving home at the end of day while blasting The Faint’s “Glass Danse” and bouncing around in my car as much as possible without driving off the road. I would instantly feel a release with the electronic intensity that resonated from my speakers, and my visions of rowdy tennis players urinating off the side of buildings would be replaced by images of dancing at my favorite bar and drinking gin and tonics. In their debut EP, Tigercity echoes this same type of electronic passion and also reveals a danceable range of talent, giving all of us another excuse to shake our respective moneymakers.
Starting in Northampton, MA, and currently living it up in Brooklyn, New York, Tigercity’s small yet sturdy contribution to the electronic music world is a result of an updated lineup of players and experience sharing the stage with such musical bigwigs as MIA, Diplo, and Mixel Pixel. While their sound remains grounded in classic electronic grooves, they also combine some funkier beats with oh-so-much-fun electroclash. They sound a bit like a combination of !!! and Fischerspooner in some songs (“Cloakrooms,” “Mountain Pass”), reflect the fast beats of i,cactus in others (“Time Card,” “Landline to Germany,” “Are You Sensation”), and reflect The Faint in their vocals and overall song structure. There is hint of real emotional maturity to their songs, created from both the vocal range of Bill Gillim and Joel Ford and the spirited sampling and musicianship of Andrew Brady and Aynsley Powell. Hopefully, this maturity demonstrates that there is more to come from this experimental group.
Tigercity manages to pack in a lot of girth in this short EP, signifying that they have much to offer in the way of interesting melodies. However, I can only hope that they manage to successfully flesh them out into a full-length LP that is just as worthy, one with a set of songs that build upon each other to create an overall theme and ambiance, as it’s not quite enough anymore for the makers of electronic music to leave that extra punch out of the usual danceable beats. Overall, I’m excited to hear what’s next.