The Tiger Club’s “Mephisto Island” is incredibly cool, Bossa Nova 60s revival cool. Listening to it is an absolute joy. With a joyful take on lounge the songs have perfect arrangements, the kinds of things that Joao Gilberto would have been proud to call his own. By updating the sounds it is a modern take on classic lounge music. Placement is ideal with each song building off the last. Emphasis is placed on a pop format for the most part, though even this is gently tweaked for the extended “Lair of Dr. Mabuse”.
Opening up with the colorful “Habanera” the song gives the listener a gentle introduction into the album’s musical universe. The large cast of musicians certainly helps in making the song sound like a tapestry. “Showdown at Mezcal Flats” moves the focus towards a spaghetti western vibe. A busy arrangement defies the hyperactivity of “Lemon Zest”. Nor are they limited to purely upbeat pieces. For “Behind the 7th Veil” they get rather atmospheric, with a jazz flute as icing on the cake. Tapping into the classics with “Mambo Cheena” The Tiger Club recalls Antonio Carlos Jobim’s “Wave”. By “Lair of Dr. Mabuse” they expand their focus. Expansive with an elegant introduction the piece has a split personality of sorts, with the brooding introduction giving way to the carefree latter half. Closing off the album is the celebratory “El Catrin”.
A playful sensibility makes The Tiger Club’s ‘Mephisto Island” an album worth embracing.
Posted by Beach Sloth