When I first received the Lily and the Tigers album, I was kind of concerned. They had described their style as Southern Gothic Folk, which worried me. In general, I know that new or relatively unknown bands try to label themselves to try to help people find the niche that they think they fit. However, I had no idea was gothic folk should sound like. This coupled with their album cover that looked like some 1980’s Hair Metal album confused me further. However, the moment the music started, it began to click.
The vocals that echo through this album come from Casey Hood; they seem to haunt the entire album. The album starts with the sounds of a haunting ballad, reminiscent of New Orleans funeral procession and fades to a guitar and duet, not out of place in a Pirates of the Caribbean movie. As the instruments swell, the music remains constant and patient. This style repeats in many tracks, notably Duet in which Casey and Katie Holcombe combine with a powerful guitar to make a song that combines Mountain Man with Pink Floyd. The darkness and vocals give most of the tracks an eerie veneer that coats the album.
Past these tracks, the album does have a wide range. Je suis Perdu feels like an Edith Piaf Bluesy song. While Feel and Heal sounds like an Alison Krauss country gospel song. The Noose takes the sensations to a whole other level with the combination of a building carnival feeling accelerating to almost chaos as the instruments and the vocals nearly lose control.
The album is rough in a few ways. There is a lot of reverb, as to the style, but often it feels unclear; out of focus. There are moments on the tracks where there seems to be background noise that may or may not be intentional. However, this is the charm of local bands. On a cool fall evening, outdoors, this band may be the best show around.
Lily and the Tiger’s debut album is called Sojourner and was Produced by Adam Bruneau of Cave Paint Records. Listen to it at http://lilyandthetigers.bandcamp.com/ and pay to download the five tracks, you won’t be sorry.