It’s extremely unusual for a band to take a look at themselves and say that it isn’t working, or that the music doesn’t reflect the direction they want to go in and then totally re-invent themselves with a new name and musical style but with the same personnel. Especially when, in their previous incarnation, they enjoyed moderate success including releasing a couple of albums and some big festival appearances. But change Tigress have done, moving from a pop-punk sound as The Hype Theory to an altogether alt-rock vibe and are now surely about to hit the heights that they so richly deserve
Tonight, Tigress are playing the opening show of their debut headline tour to a London audience that lead vocalist Katy Jackson admits are tough to please. Especially as the band accept they will have lost some fans with their new direction and are almost having to start again. But they needn’t have worried as there’s a good crowd inside the venue, considering it is a Wednesday evening. Not sold-out by any means but packed enough to ensure a suitably sweaty atmosphere. The music tonight is full on alt-rock, at times bludgeoning the crowd with heavy guitar riffs but through it all, Katy’s vocals draw the crowd in, keeping all the room’s attention fully on the stage. It’s clear to see why she is an accomplished vocal coach with her students appearing on both The Voice and The X Factor. All the tracks from the Human EP are played tonight, with each getting an ever more enthusiastic response. At the front of the stage, Katy has a presence that belies her years, Sean & Tom are exceptional guitarists and very ably accompanied by Jack on bass. Josh’s drumming holds everything together, none more so than on second song ‘Miracle’. The band have put together a brilliant setlist for this tour, an inspired mix between the “slower” songs off the EP and the full-on rock-out tunes. Towards the end of their all-too-short set, the band treat the, by now pretty sweaty audience, to the new song ‘Shockwave’ which hasn’t been heard outside of the studio until now. And if this song is indicative of their new musical direction, the future for them is incredibly bright! New single ‘Power Lines’ also gets an airing and is one of those rare breed of songs that sound even better live with a dose of attitude. Brilliant!
It’s easy to compare new(ish) bands with other, more established musicians and it seems just about every female-fronted rock band is compared with Paramore. Now, there’s nothing wrong with being likened to Hayley et al, after all, they’re pioneers of the genre and indeed, Katy welcomes such comparisons but for me, on songs like ‘Future’ and set-closer ‘Alive’, they sound like a more polished Tonight Alive or Against The Current. Just don’t compare Katy to Avril Lavigne. Trust me, she doesn’t like that comparison…..!