WE TIGERS

WE TIGERS

BandRockAlternative

A neurotic, urgent love letter to New York/UK psychedelic post-punk and Indian drone.

Biography

We Tigers' music doesn't pretend to have found or comprehended all of the social patterns that bond us. It struggles with the listener to find them, and it's just that which makes it so exciting and pertinent. Through their playing, each member desperately seeks pragmatic, unforgiving answers to their own abstract questions. Harris Novick, who studied music composition at NYU takes what would plainly be infectious vocal melodies and contorts them until bliss and gloom intertwine with his muscular chord attacks. After spending a grueling six months in India studying music, Michael Kirsch's guitar and sitar playing has become commanding and ethereal. Nicholas Occhuito brings angular, New York rock n' roll to his guitar playing, while Jonathan Silverman's gasoline-bubble bass palpitates with the tribal drums of Joshua Hoffman.

When We Tigers came together in 2006 New York, the music became a gritty, blistering vehicle that charges through a dark tunnel of psychedelia. It speaks in pop rock tongues as it races towards the daylight at the end.

On In Transit EP, recorded in the first months of 2007 and released/distributed by Them Tigers Productions, the band made the first proclamation of their biting sound. A neurotic, urgent love letter to New York/UK psychedelic post-punk and Indian drone, In Transit EP sees the band beginning to root out their musical pulse, and the result towers over anything the band initially anticipated. French website, Le Tralala Club, called Tell Two Friends, "superb," and asked its readers to "add [We Tigers to] the long list of the groups to watch for."

Not long after the release of In Transit EP, the band began crafting their second EP, Rivals. The seven-track recording, released on September 20, 2007, is an adventurous chronicle of a band that found what makes them unusual and absorbing. The thick and uncompromising sound is electrified by the very things that brought We Tigers to play music—the rapture, the pressures, the guilt, the pains, the love, the hate--all the things life presented and could only be expressed musically. The raucous wall of sound was recorded by We Tigers’ Jonathan Silverman, and mixed by Tom Durack (Lou Reed, They Might Be Giants, B52s’ Loveshack).

With a quickly building fan base and a massive live show (headlining Luna Lounge, Trash Bar, The Delancey), people are undoubtedly watching and waiting for We Tigers’ debut full-length album to be released in late 2008, and the tour that will follow.

by Ryan Piccirillo

Lyrics

In Transit

Written By: Harris Novick

See us stumble over city blocks
See us pick the locks
with tweezers
Anything to please her while we...

Dig for tunnels in the underground
but buried states abound
reminding
there's nothing left worth finding so we'll...

Have to hurl a drone at outer space
and hope with fingers crossed it finds its landing place
The destination's strange and there's no practice range
There's static on the radio we prayed to
but i can hear a signal from the east side
We're picking up a signal from the outside
The time remains
but forms decay in whirlpools towards the drain

Have the mothers of invention died?
or have they gone inside
for coffee?
a subtle move to off me for my
technological affinities
that brought with them disease
How could we?
have thought that we could copy so we'll...

Have to hurl a drone at outer space
and hope with fingers crossed it finds its landing place
The destination's strange and there's no practice range
There's static on the radio we prayed to
but i can hear a signal from the east side
We're picking up a signal from the outside

The time gets further from the place we live
The time gets further from the place we live

We're moving towards the center of the sun

Transatlantic

Written By: Harris Novick

National cargo;
I crossed the pond just to craft a travelogue
(Transatlantic)

Telegraph cable;
Aquatic junk ever since the radio
(Transatlantic)

The city gets frightening
And I live just two miles from the ocean line
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(From the ocean liners)

If it reads slowly
Then you could say that it’s like the mistletoe
(Transatlantic)

Have you ever been?
Then would you please let me do the lecturing?
(Transatlantic)

The city gets overwhelming
And I live just two miles from the ocean line
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(Transatlantic)

What ever happened to New York?
What’s so passé ‘bout the city?
Or did you find some “perspective”?
This surgery is elective
I’ve been on flights transatlantic
I’ve stayed in all of those cities
I want to get back to New York
Can we please get back to New York?

Passengers pandered
To get there first is a class accomplishment
(Transatlantic)

Digital photos
They looked the same as they ever had before
(Transatlantic)

The city gets frightening
And I live just two miles from the ocean line
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(From the ocean liners)
(From the ocean line)
(Transatlantic)

Flattery

Written By: Harris Novick

I know all your lines ‘cos every word you say is flattery
And I’ve built several decoys ‘cos I know you’re always tampering
After all this time away from me you’ve got nothing that you’d rather say
Than “Gee, you’re super cool to me. Can you take me out this Saturday?”

Still, I’ll take you out and I’ll endure each piece of flattery
‘Cos I’m a puddle just like you, so shallow; baby talk to me
After all this time away from you I want nothing more than empty words
When my mind is wracked with consequence you know just how to be overheard

And if you’ve noticed that I’ve been repeating myself
I want to make sure that I’m being heard
And if you’ve noticed, yes, I am repeating myself
I want you to hear my every word

Once I figure out exactly what it is you want from me
I’ll ask you to be my wife with ancient words of flattery
After all this time together I think we’ve past the point of mattering
Can you tell me how it used to be while my memories keep scattering

And if you’ve noticed that I’ve been repeating myself
I want to make sure that I’m being heard
And if you’ve noticed, yes, I am repeating myself
I want you to hear my every word
And if you’ve noticed the girl is just flattering you
Then tape record all that she has to say
And buy some headphones that cancel out everyone else
And let her flatter you everyday

I wrote you a song; don’t you think that it’s cool
It’s flattery that makes me drool
I act like I don’t care when really I do
It’s flattery that makes me drool
I bought us a mattress and stole you a jewel
It’s flattery that makes me drool
I act like I don’t care when baby I do
It’s flattery that makes us drool

(It’s flattery) 4x

Elbow Room

Written By: Harris Novick

If it changes hands
Will you count the dollars?
Put the kiddies on the next train
Put the kiddies on the train

Sell the skyscraper and the farm
Buy a space-station seat
Could you use a little more room?
Could you use more room?

Newspapers are looking grim
Weatherman's out sick again

If your shoulder's cold
It's because they're staring
Time to walk a little faster
Time to run like hell!

Find the shelter that lets you in
Share a bed with your boss
Don't mistake your boots for slippers
Don't mistake your boots for oil

The roots are breaking through the floor
A throng of beggars at your door

Rethink your comfort zone
We're out of head and elbow room
Realize you're on the grid
The power lines black out tonight

When the table's bare
Will you eat the crumbles?
Spare the scrapings for the kiddies
Spare the scrapings for the kids

Sell the skyscraper and the farm
Buy a space-station seat
Could you use a little more room?
Could you use more room?

Newspapers are looking grim
Weatherman's out sick again

Rethink your comfort zone
We're out of head and elbow room
Realize you're on the grid
The power lines black out tonight

(Put the kiddies on the train!)

Double Madonna

Written By: Harris Novick

1…2…3
1…2…3

La La La, La La La (4X)

She’s down today
Are you available?
Are you on her schedule?
‘Cos she’s down today
(2X)

She’s down today
And this might be your last chance…

…She’s down today
…She’s down today

Down ‘cos she’s seeking both a conscience and the cure
Downtown she’s purchasing a chemical that’s pure
She’ll destroy her body just to elevate her mind
I found her in the park today surprisingly refined
She gave an audience to all the passersby
And even though they’d have rather seen her crying
They were stricken by curiosity and marvel
Fascinated by spontaneous generation

La La La, La La La (2X)

(VERSE)

Down ‘cos she’s seeking both a conscience and the cure
Downtown she’s purchasing a chemical that’s pure
She’ll destroy her body just to elevate her mind
I found her in the park today surprisingly refined
She gave an audience to all the passersby
And even though they’d have rather seen her crying
They were stricken by curiosity and marvel
Fascinated by spontaneous generation
Then the media was there in a heartbeat
And the story went out all across the wire
She said, “Doctors want you to experiment on your own body”
“That’s immoral”
“That’s over the line”
She’s a double Madonna
She’s a double Madonna

Discography

In Transit EP (2007)
1. Elbow Room
2. In Transit
3. Tell Two Friends
4. Why Us?
5. Give is a Good Girl

Rivals EP (2007)
1. Transatlantic
2. Double Madonna
3. Flattery
4. Switchrails
5. Elbow Room II
6. Business is Booming
7. Native

Rivals EP is the sound of the city from a distance. Side A shows off the We Tigers’ psychedelic post-punk sound, most evident in “Transatlantic”, an angular blues romp that is both stoic and schizophrenic in its chugging pursuit of resolution. “Double Madonna” sees a New York Band stretch beyond the paradigm laid out for them by their predecessors, eschewing the city’s famous riff-rock and harsh attack for a more pensive and playful jaunt through the psyche of a jilted lover. Side A closes with “Flattery”, perhaps the band’s most cohesive statement to date. Its interweaving guitars conjure strands of The Velvet Underground and Nico, while the vocal melody transitions easily between hooks, stopping occasionally to admire the classic simplicity of the rhythm section. Track four, “Switchrails”, sits between both sides as the conglomeration of two unique styles; the psychedelic post-punk of Side A and the darker, polychromatic compositions of Side B. The counterpoint evident in the song’s cunning interplay proves We Tigers’ prowess and penchant for innovation. Side B starts off with “Elbow Room II”, a call and response set to Indian drone. The sitar leads the rest of the band in a tribal rallying cry that builds momentum into the chorus, which explodes in a bellow of tablas and toms. This track highlights the band’s ability to fuse musical styles in an accessible manner. Track six, “Business is Booming”, offers the slowest pace and darkest tonality of any track on the EP. It sees the band zoom in to better explore their own machinations, often taken for granted. Its slippery bass-line taunts the more rigid grand piano, while the swampy slide guitar blends with shimmering arpeggios into a seamless whole. The song digs continuously deeper until it unearths a stunning outro that touches on Johnny Greenwood freak-out and David Bowie triumph but is assuredly We Tigers’ own sound. The EP closes with the nearly eight-minute “Native”, a track that represents the apotheosis of Side B’s psychedelic experiments. The song’s painfully simple theme, repeated endlessly on the Fender Rhodes, carries the band through contrasting sonic perspectives on the protagonist’s love-hate relationship with his native home. Heavy-metal guitars join marching-band drum line and droning bass to create a wall of sound that is somehow both driving and intimate at the same time.

Set List

ORIGINAL MUSIC:

Punks at the Palisades
Fingerless Mittens
Belladonna Berries
Paper Pills
Invitations
Transatlantic
Why Us?
Flattery
Double Madonna
Native
Switchrails
Business is Booming
In Transit
Elbow Room
Elbow Room II
All My Kids