Written by: Thomas Zimmerman
Photos by: Paul Baker _ Amanda Hu of Bearcat Photography
June 18, 2010 @ the Palomino ~ Calgary, AB
“Oh My!!!”…and with that Lions and Tigers and Bears were off and running, dressed in their Sunday best (plaid shirts and holy underwear, not that I checked) enveloping the crowd that had shown up for their newest CD release party in a wave of sonic delight. With the celebratory atmosphere and the clear indication that the people attending were excited about hearing Lions and Tigers and Bears and not just there to drink, if you used your imagination just a tiny little bit and forgot that the ceiling was especially low in places, you could pretend you were at a concert in the Saddledome. The whole band immediately connected with the crowd, and it reminded me of times when I’d go over to my friend’s house to listen to records, just for the sheer enjoyment of listening. Lions and Tigers and Bears wasn’t playing for the crowd, it was as if they were sharing with them what they have so painstakingly rehearsed and created for their new album, Concocted by Fiends. One of the true indications of talent in my eyes is how relaxed a musician can appear, still be on time, in tune, and have fun all at the same time (even if Jeebs from Nushi was supplying them with “refreshments”), which every member of Lions and Tigers and Bears does. It is apparent that they love their music and relish sharing it, not to prove that they can play, but as if to say “Here, listen to this, it’s from the heart”.
After getting a copy of their new CD (sorry Cody, you were right), it was really difficult for me to decide whether I like the recorded representation or the live performance, it was that good. I had a chance to talk with Andrew (Woods?) about production of the CD, and he told me the only real work he did was show up, play and sing. Apparently Cody Coates did most of the work on the album, and from what I heard he did it very well. The only potential danger with producing your own work is mixing/editing/mastering it to the point of editing out the feeling of the music with it, which Cody thankfully has not.
This is an album you will enjoy, and if you ever get a chance to see Lions and Tigers and Bears live, definitely do whatever you need to in order to get there.
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