Tigers on Trains
The Equator!


3.5
great

Review

by iFghtffyrdmns USER (63 Reviews)
August 18th, 2011 | 21 replies


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A most promising start indeed.

Six months ago, if you'd have told me that the same musical duo who released 2009's Grandfather had first put out three EP's, The Equator! being one of them, I probably would have looked at you in the same way as that cop did back in 2010 when I tried so very hard to articulate how drittle I had been linking. Perhaps there's a smidgeon of hyperbole in that, but the point remains: Grandfather has a noticeably different sound than its forerunners. Intrigued by this obvious inconsistency and inspired to lend a second ear to the debut from Long Island based Tigers On Trains, I learned an important lesson about everybody starting somewhere, with that somewhere not necessarily being Suck-ville U.S.A.

Whereas Grandfather immediately starts the listener off on an ambient and uplifting journey, track one here plays with dark undertones of violence and hatred. Though 'Hiranyaksha' floats along atop bright major chords, vocalists Mason Maggio and Christian Van Deurs immediately introduce vocal harmonies best cataloged as haunting and droning as they softly croon about power-hungry Hindu deities waging war on an innocent Japan. This same gloomy temperament based around the ancient gods and myths of Hinduism continues on throughout The Equator, and provides and interesting perspective of the duo's impressive songwriting capacity. The imaginative sense of the ordeal, though coming off as discomforting at times, showcases two musicians trying to do something different with a couple guitars and a pair of amateur voices. That in itself is enough to revel in, and the result is as refreshing as it is exotic.

While never disbanding its formula of two unseasoned vocalists layering their efforts within simplistically folky guitar lines, The Equator! still manages to maintain quite a bit of listening value. Making out the duo's folklore-rich tales becomes a challenge to the listener, with additional details becoming clear with each subsequent listen. "Everything is right where it should be, the fish at land, the birds at sea," begins 'The Red Shirt Song', a thought-provoking number that calls attention to the ever-disputable topic of religious predestination and free will, yet Maggio and Van Deur sustain their consistently even-tempered musicianship and singing. When considering the fact that the two musicians are also a part of passion-fueled alt-rock collective The Republic of Wolves, their ability to remain so nonchalant with their playing here becomes even more impressive.

As the listener arrives at the chorus of album-closer 'Himalaya', it is quickly realized that the melody and the lyrics are the same as on 'Hiranyaksha'. The Equator ends right where it started, tying in with the album's leitmotif of religion's influential role in life's unending and repetitive circle. However, what's important here is the ground that's covered in between, and the deep-rooted existential values found on Equator speak with a lot of heart to the listener. Yet the best part of it all is the quirky and enjoyable listen that's to be had in The Equator!, and for that we all ought to be singing praises in Maggio's and Van Deur's names... all of this on just one unassertive and humble debut.



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user ratings (7)
Chart.
4.4
superb

Comments:Add a Comment 
iFghtffyrdmns
August 18th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Legal download of this, along with all their other pre-Grandfather stuff, here:

http://longislandmusicscene.wikia.com/wiki/Tigers_on_Trains



Check it out! One cause it's free and two cause it's way cooler than I realized upon my first few listens.

And if you haven't picked up Grandfather yet, well let me be the first to say that you're really missing out.

Esky
August 18th 2011


175 Comments


Been holding out for these for a while - the links were dead when I last tried.

Can't think anything will come close to Grandfather but I'm excited to listen to the 3 EPs.

iFghtffyrdmns
August 18th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

not sure if I'm allowed to post a live link for this download right here or not, I don't see why not considering these guys endorsed putting out their old EP's for free, but I'm gonna err on the side of caution and not post it here.



If you google "tigers on trains the equator", there's a good mediafire zip file link for it.

KeithStone582
August 18th 2011


1524 Comments


I love Grandfather, but is this really worth getting.

Emim
August 18th 2011


27563 Comments


I am so tired of these MOTHERFUCKING TIGERS on this MOTHERFUCKING TRAIN

Irving
Staff Reviewer
August 18th 2011


7503 Comments


You, sir, are making a solid bid for getting Contributor status before the year is out.

iFghtffyrdmns
August 18th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Aw shucks Irv, I appreciate the compliment immensely. This whole 'bid' though is more a matter of not being able to do anything for 3 weeks on account of getting my tonsils out, so I'm trying to fill some holes in the database while I've got the time. As soon as the school year starts in a week here I'm sure I'll be too busy to review, but I really do appreciate the compliment buddy :]

Irving
Staff Reviewer
August 18th 2011


7503 Comments


Unfortunately we only allow one Eric at a time on the Contrib board. So you'll have to kill SeaAnemone...or wait for him to die of old age or something.

iFghtffyrdmns
August 18th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

well you see, I'm going right for Emeritus without ever having even been a Contributor. Jom's totally gonna make it happy for me, I've been tossing checks his way for a couple months now....



Hey 4,000 comments way to go buddy! haha

letsgofishing
August 18th 2011


982 Comments


Didn't even know Tigers On Trains had another album....

EXCITEMENT!!!

iFghtffyrdmns
August 18th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

3 more EP's, yeah!! except this is just about a full length.

but get unexcited, cause download links for this are getting really really hard to find :[ the original ones from the band died... idk what to do, I want other people to be able to hear this and their other stuff...

letsgofishing
August 18th 2011


982 Comments


Son of a bitch

quick upload!

BTW, amazing review, I POS'd all over the sucker.

Esky
August 18th 2011


175 Comments


On first listen, I think I like The Tongue Bitten Swallow... a little more (Orientalizing is wonderful). All three EPs are of a different character though.

iFghtffyrdmns
August 18th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

thanks chambered, thanks fishing :]

share the download link if you've got a working one Esky! I definitely agree though, there's something definitively quirky about all 3 of them.

SowingSeason
Moderator
August 19th 2011


25624 Comments


im gonna have to finally listen to this i suppose

Digging: All The Luck In The World - A Blind Arcade

iFghtffyrdmns
August 19th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

yeah, you better.

you'll have to find it somehow though haha

Phideaux
August 19th 2011


1660 Comments


I saw this and thought maybe they had a new album or something. I've still never bothered to check out the album Sowing is always going on about. Guess I should do that.

Good review, btw.

letsgofishing
August 20th 2011


982 Comments


yeah... you need to do that.

"Death IS NOT A CURSE, IT'S THE ONLY THING THATS KEEPING US ALLIIIVE!!!!"

iFghtffyrdmns
August 20th 2011


7047 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

death* is not a curse



love that line though, beautiful beautiful record grandfather is

letsgofishing
August 20th 2011


982 Comments


yeah, fixed...I was like half asleep when I wrote that...

and that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it



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