Interview Tigers That Talked: The Future’s Bright

We catch up with frontman and songwriter Jamie.

Tigers That Talked

have just got back from a jaunt around the UK to promote the release of their new single ‘Artificial Clouds’, out today (19th October).

We catch up with frontman and songwriter Jamie Williams for a quick chat about their forthcoming debut album, why restaurants need menus, and using art to inspire music.

Hey, how are you?
Hi, we’re good thanks, we’ve been out doing a bit of a tour for the single, which has been great!

There’s been a bit of a delay in getting your debut album ready for release - what’s the hold up? Is it finished?
Haha yeah, it’s been a while coming… In hindsight I think the initial release date [of Summer 2009] was a pretty optimistic one, but it’s finished now. You only get one debut album, and we wanted ours to be something we were happy with and that’s taken a bit of time.

Your third single, ‘Artificial Clouds’, is out on 19th October. Will there be another before the album? How much of the album will have been on previous singles, and how much will be new material?
There will definitely be at least one more single released before the album, although I’m not entirely sure which track that will be… There are twelve tracks on the record and at least eight of those will never have been released before, so yeah it’s going to be mostly new to people!

Speaking of your new single, we heard the title was inspired by artist Graham Stevens - do you frequently draw inspiration from art, or are you muse’s more varied?
I take a lot of inspiration from art, films & books that I get hold of, although I try to write from personal experience as well. At the moment I’m really into a book called ‘Invisible Cities’ by Italo Calvino. It’s a collection of very minute descriptions of cities that the author has imagined, which is both really beautiful and inspiring.

Sounds interesting. There seem to be an awful lot of musicians either curating or getting involved with exhibitions at the moment (Tubelord, Green Day, Jarvis Cocker, The Victorian English Gentlemens Club…) - is that something you’d like to do in the future?
Definitely, if the opportunity arose. I can see why musicians are interested in doing that and being involved in a different sort of project.

You’ve described the single as being about ‘the hope of breaking down borders between people and of rediscovering a connection.’ It sounds a little like a mobile phone advert. Are songs better speaking for themselves?
Haha, well actually that’s a paraphrase, and the full quote ends ‘after the trauma of a death’, so it’d be quite a morbid mobile phone advert! Of course, in the same way that the best way to experience a meal isn’t to listen to the chef talk about it, music should be allowed to stand out on it’s own and speak for itself. Trying to describe a song you’ve written is an incredibly difficult process, as you’re trying to equate two completely different creative processes, experienced in completely different ways. However, sometimes it is necessary, just as restaurants still need menus.

Nice analogy. Is the track a good representation of what we can expect from the album, do you think?
Hard to say really. I think the sound and scale of the album is probably represented in some way on ‘Artificial Clouds’ but it’s certainly not an album full of songs like that one. There are much more delicate songs, as well as heavier and more ambitious ones with loads more musicians playing on them.

And finally: what will 2010 hold for Tigers That Talked?
So many exciting things! Singles, our album, extensive touring, writing new material, festivals, who knows… Maybe we’ll even write some dark mobile phone slogans! The future’s bright!

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