Words & Pictures: Adrian Hextall \ MindHex Media
Thanks to the wonderful union initiated strike that took out the entire London Underground network the night of Teiger’s single launch in Shoreditch, it fell to inventive ways of transportation to get from work near St Paul’s Cathedral to the venue in time to catch the 3 band bill before heading back to Victoria Station to get the train home. Big shout out therefore to the marvellous invention that is Lime Bicycles. I’ve never cycled in London, it’s never felt safe. I’m not even keen on the busses, mainly because the underground is and always has been THE way to get around. Still, beggars can’t be choosers and one app download later, I’m peddling away with my camera bag on my back across town straight through the Old Street roundabout (eyes closed for safety reasons) before arriving at Strongroom, our venue for the evening.
We’re here to see Teiger, a 3-piece from London who weave fascinating sonic tapestries with their mix of quiet metal and bright acoustic rock. Their songs flip from melancholic to uplifting, fragile and furious but never dull. They play, it has to be said, music in a style that, currently, no one else does. Teiger creates a rich and melancholic atmosphere that’s both fragile and occasionally furious.
Before the band come on to the stage to promote new single Hydra, which you can watch below, we get support from Gareth Freiheit and openers, Lilies in my brain.
Lilies in my Brain
Alt \ Indie act Lilies in my Brain got the ball rolling with a warm, rich set that drew heavily from their debut album ’21 = 2a +7′. With a title like that, one might be forgiven in thinking we were going to get 20 minutes of pure math rock where technical musicianship borders on the edge of archetypal progressive rock. Instead the band delivered a mixture of upbeat and melancholy tunes with a neat modern twist. For the musos out there, if you check out lead guitarist Alex (I believe) and just what he can do with a six string. It bodes extremely well for the band’s upcoming 2nd release.
This is likely to be the band’s last show for a while whilst they head back into the studio to record the follow up to ’21 = 2a +7′ so keep an eye out for more info here:
When Gareth Freiheit I genuinely thought we’d come to see the cofficionado from the Kenco coffee commercials. Thankfully, whilst I have nothing again the person everyone else calls Mike, I was here for a little bit of rock music and the multi-instrumentalist who also doubles up a a producer quickly dispelled any and all fears that we’d somehow segued into filming a new commercial.
Performing as a 3-piece, the outfit yet again put together a set that felt deep, contemplative and perfectly suited to warming us up for the main attraction tonight, Teiger. His music presents and brings to the live environment a sense of suave sophistication, all the time giving us enough grit and energy to keep the crowd in the Strongroom smiling and clapping throughout. His lyrics feel like he could mesmerise a room with the poetry embedded within the songs but by the time he’s finished, the smiles on the faces of the people in the room suggest he’s done his thing.
Time for a quick cuppa before we move on to the headliners.
If variety is the spice of life then Teiger are the Schwartz of the upcoming London music scene. Like a fine malt whiskey, the band deserve to be savoured, enjoyed slowly and clearly and whilst the music is played with the energy and intensity that you expect from a rock gig, the subtleties of their music and the way lead vocalist Talie Rose Eigeland wrings every note out of her guitar, conveying sounds that just shouldn’t be coming out of it, suggests that the band will have an awful lot to say when their debut album finally drops.
Over the course of some 40 odd minutes, Talie alongside bass player Phillip Eldridge-Smith make for the perfect pairing. For a trio to carry the songs to the crowd those that can move and groove need to engage the crowd and Eigeland and Eldridge-Smith play off each other perfectly. Smiles, licks, riff and room filling bass work, all aided of course by drummer Jon Steele’s precision work in the background.
The trio show the sort of promise, the hint at being the next big thing, quite simply because no one plays music the way they do. We’re not talking tangents and extremes that The Fall and Mark E Smith might have dipped into over several decades but music that will be accessible by all, radio friendly yet still managing to be a totally unique experience that people should and will latch on to.
I for one was glad to be at this event, as I’m going to assume that hundreds if not thousands will probably claim to have been there as well. If you need proof you were there then I’m happy to sell crowd shots in a decade’s time!
Watch out for Teiger.
The Crawl / Sahara / Come and Find Me / Slow Burning / Glory Box / Sunrise / The Law of Diminishing Returns / Feeling Good / Hydra