Review Summary: A warm embrace from a familiar friend
Tigers Jaw have always felt a bit like an anomaly in the wonderful corner of music run by Run For Cover, Will Yip and half a dozen bands trying to recapture Peripheral Vision
’s magic. The band’s attitude is uncharacteristically chill
, as they seem to simply be cruising along no matter the circumstances internal or external to the band. While it’s commendable that the majority of the members quitting left the remaining power duo of Ben and Brianna seemingly unfazed, it is the sense of authenticity that makes Tigers Jaw as strong of a unit as they are. From the angsty pop punk leanings of their lauded self-titled debut to the chill-but-not-a-victim-of-Turnover-isms spin
, the band seem to exclusively put forth the music they want to make, and thankfully, this music happens to be pretty damn good.
I Won’t Care How You Remember Me
is no exception to this rule. Instead of forcing progression or embarking on wildly new adventures, the band stay within their comfort zone while embracing as many warm and inviting melodies as possible. ‘Hesitation’ boasts a typical Tigers Jaw chorus, equal parts punchy and floaty as Ben Walsh’s unique voice guides the song into a brief, satisfying conclusion. Similarly, ‘Cat’s Cradle’ thrives off a simplistic synth melody and crunchy guitars elegantly trading the spotlight. Brianna Collins, whose voice is used less sparingly throughout the record to great effect, adds a luscious touch to the track and provides a pleasantly detached contrast to the familiar palette. I Won’t Care...
is not an album of grandiose, standout moments: rather, it sees fit to bundle straightforwardly pleasant songs into an intimate, colourful bouquet.
As such, standout moments are easy to identify. The opener and title track is a slice of indie rock perfection, directing smooth acoustic wails into a delicately soaring conclusion, aided by omnipresent indie God™ Andy Hull. Elsewhere, ‘Commit’ adopts a bouncy indie pop aesthetic, displaying Brianna’s brightest vocal performance to date. Such moments provide some welcome variation to a relatively homogenous album. Yet, quite remarkably, I Won’t Care…
more than gets away with seeming like a ‘Tigers Jaw on autopilot’-record. While it’s clear that the band are not trying to expand their sonic textures, the album feels like the product of seasoned songwriters knowing precisely where their strengths and weaknesses lie. It can be felt in ‘Can’t Wait Forever’s understated guitar solo or in ‘Heaven Apart’s scintillating lyricism: every moment is crafted with clear care and passion. It may not be the most ambitious or poignant Tigers Jaw album, but I Won’t Care...
is a warm embrace from a familiar friend; something which is more than welcome in present times.