Jimi, bass player of Tigercub, is joking with the crowd about the size of Jamie Hall, vocalist / guitarist with the band. The man is giant, he wanders on stage at Glasgow’s Broadcast where he just about fits under the ceiling. He’s carrying a pint which in his hands looks like a half pint. Good job, Glasgow doesn’t do half pints. I’ve briefly come across Tigercub before, a single released as part of the Too Pure Singles Club in 2015 (read our Too Pure Interview feature here). Two seconds before their first song I’m wondering if it’s Jamie’s size that’ll be the most memorable thing about the band. Two seconds into their opener I’m hooked. They’re immediacy is down to their urgency. Pounding aggressive riffs, battering bass lines shudder around the room, perfectly backed by thunderous drumming. The vocals and lyrics capture aggression at times, sorrow at others. They are going to get compared to QOTSA a lot, and that’s reasonable, but I think there’s more invention going on in these guitar parts, their punches are that little bit punchier. Like the football commentator cliche, for a big guy he’s got a lovely touch. Go see these guys play as soon as you can.
More melodic but still packing a very hefty punch are tonight’s star attraction Dilly Dally from Newmarket, Ontario on their first venture in Europe. It’s impossible to start anywhere other than THAT voice and I don’t have the words to come close to doing it justice. Katie Monk’s vocals are incredible, if she wasn’t singing in a great band like Dilly Dally it would be a travesty. She rasps, roars, growls, yells and screams her way through the set like she’s been told she’s allowed 500 more words before her voice stops forever. I always thought I’d never hear a better vocalist than Corin Tucker, I’m not so sure now, Katie’s definitely up there.
That’s not to say Dilly Dally are just a voice, far from it. What they’ve done is build music around Katie’s voice that brings out the absolute best in it. Their songs are strongly bass lead, played with determination by the energetic Jimmy Tony. They’re heavy, sludgy songs that sound as filthy and grimy as many of the basement venues they’re currently playing in. The lead guitar sharpens all this up, sometimes adding urgency, and other times a melody that helps to capture the agony, anger and lust behind many of these songs. Liz Ball twists and bends on the spot as she plays, coaxing her amp to work harder, like she’s using her body to squeeze every last drop of noise out of her guitar. The overall result is songs that ooze with a fuzzing desperation. They play pretty much every track from their excellent 2015 debut album Sore and the only disappointment is that it has to finish sometime.
There’s barely any chat between songs, just the noise of an appreciative, if slightly laid back crowd being drowned out by feedback. It’s almost like the audience is struck dumb, staring with disbelief that Katie can produce these sounds from somewhere inside her whilst her don’t-give-a-shit demeanour suggests it’s no big deal. If hard hitting grunge rock is your thing Dilly Dally are unmissable. In fact, I don’t care if jazz, classical or listening to recordings of whales is your thing, you’ve got to go see this band and witness a voice straight from the burning pits of hell.
Overblown interviewed Dilly Dally when they released debut album Sore – check that out here