The Ritual Of The Tyger
The gang from Whitley Bay, England returns again November 22nd via Might Music Records with what could be their best since 1981’s Spellbound. Tygers of Pan Tang were originally part of the NWOBHM movement back in the days of the huge influx of great music that made its way across the big drink along with bands like Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Saxon, etc.
Having broken up in 1987, and reforming again 1999, Robb Weir remains as the last original Tyger to present day. Ironically this last album, Ritual was recorded at former Tyger guitarist Fred Purser’s studio in Newcastle, England. Mixing and additional production was handled by none other than Soren Anderson (Glenn Hughes) and mastering was handled by the incomparable Harry Hess (Harem Scarem, Hess)
This album has enough hooks to excite your grandmother’s knitting club and some great sing-along chorus as well, but the Tygers came to rock hard, and they do exactly that.
The Ritual Begins
Ritual is exactly what the fans should expect from a great Hard Rock album. The melodic sounds mixed with some blistering guitars and hard-hitting drums. This is very apparent in the opening track of “Worlds Apart“. This song just simply kicks ass and takes no prisoners. The opening ear-worm of the guitar will grab you right from the start, and then the hard-hitting symbol crashes grab you, and this is even before the guitar picks up, and begins a fast-paced riff. The vocals come in and take this tune to a new stratosphere.
However, this ride has just begun. You have begun the ascent and took the first huge plunge down the insane ride, but just around that corner you know there is more coming. “Destiny” slides in and the ride continues with a soulful voice. The pounding percussions are back and you actually begin to feel bad for the punishment that they are enduring. The lyrics are thoughtful, and well written, and do tell a story, unlike many of these so-called hits of today in those other genres that just repeat over and over again.
The Tygers Pounce
Slipping into the triple-twist of the roller-coaster you’re on, comes, “Rescue Me“. The sounds from the guitars that keep up with the pounding drums are almost like they have a huge amount of distortion before it becomes a thrusting riff, and back again. A simple riff and hook that becomes infectious, and still has you in its clutches. The vocals, clear and understandable, will have you singing along before you realize you’re doing it.
The track that will “Raise Some Hell” is definitely the hidden gem on the record. This has got to be a live track used to get the crowd worked into a frenzy. Fast-paced, and heavy as hell. Screaming vocals, a rocket train paced guitar, and drums to match. If this song doesn’t get you off your backside and have your fist-pounding, then shut off the record and go back to your BackStreet Boys, because you’re listening to the wrong music!
As this roller coaster continues, you reach the point where you just don’t wanna get off yet, and hope the rest is just as exciting. Luckily, you would be right. “Spoils Of War” might be the part of the ride that is just a succession of those knolls that put your stomach in your throat. Not as fast-paced, but just as fun to experience. Great solo on this one. Slowed down to a more melodic pace, but masterfully played.
The Art Of The Ritual
After a few more thrills, and twists, you know the ride is gaining its way to the final gate, but don’t take the safety bar off just yet. “The Art Of Noise” has yet another trick that will have you raising your fists into the air, and trying to catch your breath once again. Very heavy on the musicianship on this one. Once again, I found myself wondering how many times they had to retune the guitars, and change broken strings on the guitars, not to mention replacing the heads on the drums, and replacing dented and beyond repair cymbals.
So ahead you can see the gate where the ride will come to an end. Your breathing heavy trying to catch your breath, but just want to stay on, and take the ride again, but it’s still a bit down the tracks. There is one last bit of the ride to experience. Hang on, because you still have to “Sail On” until the end. Maybe not the most exciting part of this ride, but still an effective end. Clear concise vocals and equally as good playing from the rest of the Tygers are ever-present here. So sit back, and enjoy this last bit of this Ritual and to hell with keeping your arms and legs inside the ride at all times.
Ritual may be as I’ve said before the beast sounding album since 1981’s Spellbound, but don’t take me wrong, it’s still a fresh new album that stands on its own. You couldn’t ask for a more beautifully produced album. I for one couldn’t be happier that the Tygers Of Pan Tang decided to continue to make and put out new music, especially if it is going to be of this calibre. So remember on November 22nd, to grab your tickets, and enjoy the ride that everyone will be talking about. Raise those fists, and enjoy.
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Trevor “Psychoone” McDougall
Email Me at: Trevor “Psychoone” McD
- Robb Weir – Guitars
- Jacopo Meille – vocals
- Micky Crystal – guitars
- Gav Gray – bass
- Craig Ellis – drums & percussion
- Worlds Apart
- Rescue Me
- Raise Some Hell
- Spoils of War
- White Lines
- Words Cut Like Knives
- Damn You!
- Love Will Find a Way
- Art of Noise
- Sail On