Teiger + Rival Karma + Anolah + Fractal Blow
Thursday 7th September 2023
The Underworld, Camden, London
Not having seem this band before, I got the impression that the line -up was somewhat improvised for the night. The three-piece for the evening, started with the song ‘Truthfulness’. Starting slow and building to a synth-heavy outro. This was followed by the somewhat downbeat song ‘Fear Is Not Allowed’ with a rather Nirvana-esq verse section, something that continued setting the tone for the rest of the set. Songs like ‘Going Off On Me’ seemed to lack some of the drive of the original, in this semi-acoustic version, especially the lack of driving bass. But that’s what happens when you strip down a line-up.
With a drummer and bassist added, things were kicked up a level and it worked. Anolah and Zee Bones, though very young, were playing their hearts out and deservedly so. Her dusky voice fits well with the style of Rock that she’s going for. ‘Stones’ is her present single and she went down well as the crowd started to swell. Only time will tell but I was left somewhat undecided. I wish her a great future.
While waiting for the gig to start, I bumped into my mate Paul Shine who was apparently a big fan of the band and so I awaited their arrival with a certain amount of expectation. The duo took to the stage and instantly kicked up the sort of racket that only a two-piece can do! Impressive! Definitely more Black Keys than White Stripes, but kicking butt however. Billing themselves as a Ninja Rock Duo, they more than live up to their name!
With songs like ‘Apocalypse Boogie’, ‘Chemical Courage’ and ‘Jesus is From Chico’, this is always about keeping the guitar/drum groove flowing… and they do! Strutting around the stage was a nice change from everybody not daring or being able to leave their mic stand! And before I knew it they were done! And just as I was getting into it too…
And so to tonight’s headliner, Teiger, and their album launch. Fronted by guitarist and vocalist, Talie Rose Eigeland, who sings with hints of Grace Slick but with the ability to still sound like herself. Opening with ‘The Crawl’, with its cool guitar intro was a nice slow way to bring the band in. Comprising of bassist Phillip Eldridge-Smith and drummer Jon Steele, they form a very tight unit and this instrumental track set the tone. Following this, the second track on the album, ‘Sahara’ kicks in, introducing Talie’s vocals. I understand the references to Jefferson Airplane, but before we knew it, we were immersed in ‘Come And Find Me’. A somewhat rambling song that didn’t instantly grab me (so a few more listens won’t hurt), but definitely one that was deeper in sentiment than I got on that first listen.
After a rather brief plug for the new album and single, we moved swiftly on to ‘The Law Of Diminishing Returns’ and a song that is an odyssey in its own right, a song of a quite a few parts… Next up we were treated to ‘Splinter’, with some nice tight work between the bass and drums and some deep arrangements. Rather clever. This was followed by, ‘Slow Burning’, yet another song with some well thought out musical sections alongside some very ethereal vocals. ‘Glory Box’ was next, before ‘The Thinnest Wall’ kicked in. Once again, a little meandering for my taste, but it certainly had its place in the scheme of things setting the crowd up for the show closer, ‘Hydra’.
Talie Rose started with a confident vocal before the rhythm ramped up, before dropping back down to almost an ambient groove. Big vocals kicked back in and gave this song a great send off. And suddenly it was over. A great album launch for a new artist and very confident it was too.
It was just a shame that there was only back-lighting for the sets. Hopefully next time, she will actually step out of the shadows.