Route One or Die sees the anthropomorphic trio, Three Trapped Tigers, roar their way onto the music scene and this ferocious arrival is made even more impressive by the technical complexity of their music.
This album beeing an instrumental affair, full of lightning fast keyboard solos that would make Steve Vai weep, Route One or Die is surprisingly engaging. The band have managed to avoid the scrapheap pile of tech-metallers too concerned with the speed of their playing, and have produced a stellar album whose plethora of emergent sounds is always enthralling. Whether in the dub-metal of ‘Noise Trade’, the doom-electronica of the aptly named ‘Creepies’, or the Aphex Twin grooves of ‘Magne’, Three Trapped Tigers are constantly experimenting with innovative textures and new exciting ways to make your ears bleed.
Styles and sounds are constantly juxtaposed, with electro, dub and even classical tones posited against screaming guitars and rioting drums. All this shouldn’t work, but it – practically – always does. At times, perhaps, we yearn for some repose, and it is briefly offered to us in the unsettling tranquillity of ‘Zil’, but there is a sense that too much restraint would sound like selling out to a band rooted in the underground and signed to the indie label ‘Blood and Biscuits’.
This pioneering album takes many left-field and underground trends, like Death-Rock, Math- Rock and Improv, and makes them instantly accessible and consistently exciting. You’re left with a sense that this strange new future-music could go a long way from here. Let’s hope this is just the beginning.