Gotten enough Tigers yet? Yes? No? Well here's a belayed review of their latest show in Los Angeleeeeeeees.
The Republic Tigers
Monday, December 17
Spaceland, Los Angeles
Photo & Review by BERRY ANDERSON
Just east of Hollywood, Silver Lake is a hotbed of indie-rock goings-on. It has been called home at some point or another to the likes of Karen O, Perry Farrell and Elliott Smith. Spaceland, an inconspicuous club three blocks off of Sunset Boulevard, is at the epicenter of this scene. On the evening of Monday, December 17, it was the stage for Kansas City's Republic Tigers, Chop Shop Records newest it band.
The crowd seemed fairly thick for a 9 p.m. show. MySpace puts me in the know about these types of events, but I’m guessing that promotion by LA’s Indie 103.1 and Chop Shop also helped put the word out to the late-20s, dark-clothed set. The crowd was relaxed and nondescript, and the scene wasn't at all like the stereotypical horror story that Midwesterners relate when telling me about their experiences of the club scene here in my homeland.
Opening for Portland’s the Hugs, the Tigers went on with little ado in front of a fairly full house that emptied soon after the six-song set was over. While they were there, the crowd was treated with the sounds that make this new band one of KC’s most beloved. In the fairly short time that I have been following the band, I've already witnessed their sound evolve. It’s gotten heavier, with guitars making their way to the front and the dreamy electronic melodies fading away a bit, making for an edgier -- and better -- live show.
The band rolled out new material along with old faves “Made Concrete” and “Rollercoaster”. The crowd responded to the fluidity on stage with rapt attention. The Tigers looked tight, sounded tight, and got loose. They made a Chiefs joke during a break, and people in the crowd even gave shoutouts to Leawood, Lenexa and the 816. KC love travels even into the farthest of trendy cracks.
I got the chance to talk with drummer Justin Tricomi after the show. This was the band's last night in LA before going back home the next morning. Recently signed to the label headed by Alexandra Patsavas -- the music supervisor for the TV shows “Grey’s Anatomy”, “Gossip Girl”, and “Num3ers" -- the Republic Tigers had spent the past week and a half recording at The Ballroom, the studio of sound engineer Mark Needham’s (The Killers, Chris Isaak, Cake). “Mark Needham is a genius and the label is awesome," Tricomi raved. "The people we have worked with are down to earth and it’s really comforting to have them on our side. We got really used to working them and now we have to split."
In the time that the Tigers weren’t recording, they tried to relax and check out their surroundings. They also recorded an interview on Indie 103.1 with former Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones, “a guy that should have been getting interviewed instead of doing the interview,” says Tricomi.
So what’s on tap for the Republic Tigers for the time being back in KC? Rest, finishing up last- minute recording issues online and over the phone, and a tentative date at the Record Bar.
Enjoy the holidays, boys. You've earned it.