Today, almost five years since the release of their acclaimed debut album ‘Route One or Die’, London’s Three Trapped Tigers announce the release of their second full-length, ‘Silent Earthling’, due April 1st.
“I think the problem for anyone striving to create their own sound is, once you – hopefully – have achieved that, how do you expand that whilst maintaining it?” asks guitarist and keyboard player Matt Calvert of himself on the evolution of Three Trapped Tigers. The answer in this instance is really rather a simple one and it is to be found within the glorious, eclectic and exhilarating ‘Silent Earthling’, an album that carries forward the unique idiosyncrasies the group have shaped for themselves, whilst simultaneously expanding into previously unexplored territory.
For the unacquainted, Three Trapped Tigers are a band for which genres & labels struggle to keep up, they move –often at breakneck speed – from screeching, effect-laden guitars, an arsenal of glistening sci-fi synths, pummelling sub-bass, colossal riffs and audacious drum patterns that both underpin and define their unique sound. As anyone who has seen their incendiary live shows will know, trying to pinpoint what makes the group such a force is a difficult thing to do. On stage they are something of a vortex, creating a swirling mass of layered sounds that sucks one in, possessing that rare ability of managing to sound complex and fluid whilst eschewing any feelings of pomposity or sterility – in full force Three Trapped Tigers feel both gracefully intelligent and wildly primal, gargantuan yet melodic.
It’s been five years since their debut studio album, ‘Route One or Die’, came out. It has been these intervening years that have moulded the new record, through a combination of touring and live experiences (playing with the likes of Deftones and Dillinger Escape Plan), as well as a rich and impressive series of collaborations and personal projects that have augmented the group’s palate. The group worked with Brian Eno and Karl Hyde of Underworld, using Brian’s ‘Oblique Strategies’ during the writing stages of ‘Silent Earthling’, something that proved an invaluable way of forcing the group out of their comfort zones. Through Brian they also performed at Punkt Festival in Norway and played an improvised collaboration gig in Oslo with their synth hero Ståle Storløkken of Supersilent. Calvert and the group’s drummer, Adam Betts, currently form the backbone of The Heritage Orchestra, and have recently been part of some truly unique projects: an electro-orchestral, multi-media reworking of Joy Division material; performing the Blade Runner soundtrack; and also performing the Music of Giorgio Moroder at Sydney Opera House. They also played Goldie’s album Timeless at the Royal Festival Hall. In fact their musical explorations have been so vast and varied they’ve even found themselves working with the likes of Roots Manuva, Skepta and JME. Keyboard player Tom Rogerson has even taken the Brian Eno connection to the next level and a collaborative album with Brian Eno is due later this year.