TYGERS OF PAN TANG LEAVE YOU SPELLBOUND AS THEY DO IT AGAIN
Tygers Of Pan Tang: 'Tygers Of Pan Tang'
Release Date: Friday 21st October 2016 (Mighty Music)
Over the last couple of years, there's been a resurgence in the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) movement thanks to events like Hard Rock Hell NWOBHM, Brofest and the Garage Dayz Re-Visited Festival whilst heritage acts like Diamond Head, Praying Mantis, Girlschool and Vardis have been releasing albums of new material that hark back to those halcyon days whilst still offering something new to both the older fans who thought they’d seen it all before as well as those younger fans who weren’t there the first time round.
Without exception, this new music has been of good quality and Tygers Of Pan Tang are the latest band to feel the need to once again pick up the guitars, dust off their studio etiquette manuals and bring a bit more NWOBHM goodness back to an eager public.
The last proper release from the band was 2012s 'Ambush', but they've kept their foot in the door by playing a handful of gigs each year around the UK and Europe, ensuring that the name as well as the band themselves didn't disappear from sight. In fact, I caught them live for the first time ever myself back in 2015 at a small festival in Scotland, and I was absolutely blown away by their performance and they were one of the true highlights of the event and in the process, put some of the newer bands in the shade with their performance and their attitude, not to mention a clutch of classic tracks I'd previously only heard on my scratchy old vinyl.
Late in 2015, Tygers Of Pan Tang announced they had signed a new record deal with Scandinavia's premier rock and Metal label, Mighty Music, giving the band the opportunity to record some recently penned material and very soon the Tygers had ensconced themselves in The Blast Studio in Newcastle, not far from their native Whitley Bay, along with Søren Andersen (Glenn Hughes, Mike Tramp) who mixed the material for what would become this, the band's twelfth full length studio effort.
The first single. 'Only The Brave', was released in August 2016 and it was met with a positive critical response and it's easy to see why this was chosen as not only the first single but also the first track of the album. Tygers Of Pan Tang have always been a bit more laid back than some of their NWOBHM counterparts but that doesn't mean that they can't rock with the best of them.
The opening salvo is a powerful start and a statement of intent from the band, showing that they've lost none of their fire. There's a killer guitar riff and once the main tempo has settled down, frontman Jacopo Meille really attacks the vocals. The same goes for 'Never Give In' further down the line and this fast paced number also has a show-stealing guitar solo. Pre-order 'Tygers Of Pan Tang' right here...
Talking of show-stealing guitar solos, there's more than a few of them sprinkled about the album. 'Glad Rags' has one too, and it could be the best solo of the album. From the beginning it's the guitar drives the track, and Meille puts in a great vocal performance in what is more of a bluesy number. Drummer Craig Ellis keeps the rock steady beat at the back whilst the backing vocals during the chorus really add an extra boost to it. All in all, a top tune that's bound to get the foot tapping or the audience clapping along if it makes it into the band's live set.
'The Reason Why' is the album's ubiquitous ballad but it's an incredibly strong piece. Never wallowing in self pity, the lyrics remain fairly upbeat and the solid drumming from Ellis is a great backing for the song. The easy to remember chorus will have you singing along after only a couple of listens and once again there's backing vocals to fill out the song.
'Praying For A Miracle' and 'Angel In Disguise' are a couple of acoustic numbers slipped in and they allow Meille to showcase his voice, and what a voice he has. With the former though, just when you think you're in for another ballad, the band skips straight into electric guitar mode and they pump up the tempo. Sure the acoustic guitar is still there but this is a much better song with the electric guitars as opposed to being all acoustic.
It's very clear from this that there's a lot more music still in the Tygers and this isn't just another band holding onto past glories. They have had a long career already but I really hope this album will push them on to produce more new material because this is just as strong as anything currently residing in their sizeable back catalogue.
You can see Tygers of Pan Tang live here:
Friday 21st October: The Cluny, Newcastle
Saturday 22nd October: The Old Courts, Wigan
Monday 24th October: The Black Heart, London
Tuesday 25th October: The Robin 2, Bilston
Wednesday 26th October: The Fruit, Hull
Thursday 27th October: The New Crown, Merthyl Tydfi
Friday 28th October: The Rock & Blues, Barnsley
Saturday 29th October: Bannermans, Edinburgh
Friday 25th November: Winter Storm Festival, Troon
Saturday 7th January: Hard Metal Fest, Mangualde
Monday 6th March: Hell Over Hamburg, Hamburg
Tickets are starting to go on sale now right here. If the venue you want to go to isn't available yet, bookmark this link and keep checking back.
'Tygers Of Pan Tang' Tracklist:
Only The Brave
The Reason Why
Never Give In
Do It Again
I Got The Music In Me
Praying For A Miracle
Blood Red Sky
Angel In Disguise
The Devil You Know