Brighton trio TIGERCUB are extremely pleased to announce a brand new EP titled Evolve or Dieset for release on 29th September via Alcopop! Records, available on limited edition red vinyl and all good digital platforms.
After a rapturous reception to debut album Abstract Figures In The Dark, TIGERCUB have had a busy 2017, headlining a MEGs funded European tour, joining Royal Blood & The Fall on several of their comeback euro dates, hitting a huge UK run with Pulled Apart by Horses & Black Peaks whilst being confirmed for a stack of festivals including 2000 Trees, Y Not?, Truck, and Reading & Leeds’ Pit Stage to name a few.
Publically lauded by both press and their peers, including the likes of The Radio 1 Rock Show and Dan P. Carter, Huw Stephens, Annie Mac, Spotify, Kerrang!, Upset, Oli Sykes, Deaf Havana, Royal Blood and so many more, this is a vital next step for TIGERCUB into uncharted territory.
From the start, Evolve or Die was the band’s mantra for the next step in their creative evolution, and would be the title of the record before they even set foot in the studio. As a release in the Tigercub canon, Evolve or Die is the latest leg of an introspective journey for a band transitioning into something entirely different, a path to somewhere new and exciting.
The thematic inspiration for the record comes from a short story released in the ‘60s by Argentinian author George Louis Borge called ‘The Library of Babel’. An image of a page from one its imagined books dominates the front cover of the new EP. The plot is set in a universe in the form of a vast library which consists of an enormous expanse of hexagonal rooms containing the bare necessities for human survival. Though the order and content of the books on the shelves is random and apparently completely meaningless, the inhabitants believe that the books contain every possible ordering of just 25 basic characters (22 letters, the period, the comma, and the space).
“Rock music can be so nostalgic and conservative” says front man Jamie Hall of the current musical climate “I think the only way to find a mass audience is to try and stay relevant, and I don’t feel like rock music tries to be relevant a lot of the time.”
“The Library of Babel opens up the question of determinism for me” he continues “Do we have autonomy over our own lives? I get that feeling with rock music sometimes, that it already contains all the possible combinations. To break out of that and create your own autonomy in a world that’s already been determined for you hits to the heart of what drives me to write songs – they compel me as an artist, these types of interesting philosophical questions.”
Evolve or Die is not a reincarnation, or a reinvention. Collectively, the band’s diverse tastes in music, the vast pool of inspiration between the three of them, their obsessive drive to learn, comprehend, even assimilate and re-interpret musical technique are deeply present within the band’s presentation of songs over their catalogue so far. It’s the latest adaptation for survival from a band who want their fans to expect the unexpected on each and every release. Working once more with producer Alex Newport, he proved a key player in keeping the band on their path throughout the recording process.
“Alex is particularly inspiriting to work with for us because he shares our vision and our drive to expand our pallet – he enables us to go there”explains drummer J’allix “To experiment with unfamiliar instruments and equipment can be pretty scary when you’re ‘on the clock’ in the studio, but he channelled and focussed the best of our ideas and it’s also humbling to find someone that you hold in such high regard, that you can seamlessly work with on a creative level.”
The band knew that wanted the record to be bold and stylistically out-reaching anything they’d done previously before they even got down to work – they knew they wanted live drums in tandem with machines, live and looped guitars, samples, layered drums to create textures and cross rhythms, as Hall continues to expand: “We wanted to see whether these songs could stand up on their own without the ‘creature comfort’ methods and techniques we’ve learnt to lean on, so we did things we’d never done before, like removing all the riffs. Then we recorded everything back to front, sampled it, looped it, and ran into the red. It was a truly testing and truly terrifying experience but I wanted us to channel that uncertainty and intensity and turn it into something special.“
In a laborious writing process which saw Hall battling with over sixty songs, they finally came to a tipping point where he and the band felt a stylistic evolution happening. With the trio deliberately holed up and cut off from the outside world, they finally had the space and time to understand that realising their own artistic mortality was directly reflective of The Library of Babel and the strive for originality and singular expression.
“It was strange to break down the fourth wall of being aware that I am a songwriter. It was a process that almost killed everyone involved, but it was such a breakthrough getting these songs. I feel like I’m becoming the songwriter I always imagined I could be, of a sound that’s potentially solely ours – that we could call Tigercub’s and is nobody else’s. This is a pivotal record in the progression of our band – it’s a step toward where we intend to take our next release.”
Evolve or Die is released 29th September via Alcopop! Records.
TIGERCUB 2017 Tour Dates + Festival Appearances:
26 Aug: Reading – Reading Festival
27 Aug: Leeds – Leeds Festival
02 Sep: York – Bingley Music Festival
16 Oct: Southampton – Joiners
17 Oct: Exeter – Cavern
18 Oct: Oxford – The Cellar
20 Oct: Milton Keynes – Craufurd Arms
21 Oct: Birmingham – Flapper
23 Oct: Huddersfield – The Parish
24 Oct: Newcastle – The Cluny
25 Oct: Edinburgh – Mash House
26 Oct: Manchester – Star & Garter
27 Oct: Norwich – The Waterfront Studio