Tygers Of Pan Tang - Ritual

Tygers Of Pan Tang Ritual cover
Tygers Of Pan Tang
Mighty Music/Target Group
The good ole Tygers Of Pan Tang are still roaring, with their newest album “Ritual” dropping in late 2019. In a year that a lot of older bands came up with some pretty good albums (Angel Witch, Diamond Head, The Rods come to mind), the Tygers are also coming up with the goods, with an album that sits well with the rest of the canon and pretty much cements Jacopo Meille’s era, as the genuine heir of the bands rich 80s legacy.
Pretty much straightforward, riffy rock ‘n metal is the name of the game, not really straying far from where the last handful of albums have been wandering and I guess for a band with such a long history that’s probably the sole requirement. To be consistent… and obviously not boring. Thankfully Robb Weir and his bunch, not only have the riffs and melodies, but also the chops and common sense to craft some simple, but instantly memorable tunes out of them and boy does the formula work... backed by a bright, warm and balanced production the album manages to go from rocking to hellraising in a matter of a few songs… while there are also enough more melodic moments to offer a breather throughout.
“Worlds Apart” is a thumbing mid-tempo with some instantly sing-along parts. A bit like it’s Journey namesake, but it feel like something that could have been on “Wreck-age” that might have given the excellent title track a run for its money”. Dramatic rock/metal doesn’t get any better than this and it’s not only the meaty riffs that make it work, but also the fluid and really tasteful solo that you might find yourself remembering days after you’ve heard the song…
“Destiny” drops the speed a bit, but drips with attitude. It has a nice groove, backed by a strong riff and an engaging melody, and it lets its chorus do the talking. Nuff said.
“Rescue Me” is a cool mid-tempo rocker, that sounds undeniably Tygeresque, but also reminded me a bit of modern day Europe, with the exception that Mielle can still use his entire range still.
You know that “Raise Some Hell” means business; just by the way the riff comes on. Fast and pretty furious, this is a quick paced rocker in the vein of the first couple of albums, but harder edged still… think “Hellbound” and then some more.
“Spoils of War” is probably the heaviest song up to this point, border-lining south of Saxon territory, with an epic melody that lingers and a chorus that doesn’t hurry to unfurl. Also another bluesy and fluid af solo, hues it with some crimson Lizzyesque lines. Awesome.
“White Lines” doesn’t refer to the lines that go all the way from Peru, straight up rich people’s noses, but rather the ones on the road and is a thumbing bluesy rocker with exceeding amounts of melody… one of the most 80s songs, you’re likely to have never heard (unless you are paying attention) this side of 2019.
“Words Cut like Knives”… with a title like that, what do you a expect a near thrash, speed-run? Of course, it’s a ballad and a pretty good one too.
“Damn You!” is your basic rocker, and while it’s pretty simple in its conception, it’s well executed and has enough charisma to keep the album moving forward, without stalling.
“Love Will Find a Way” begins with a nice guitar lead, which is a little unconventional, but quickly it retreats in a bluesy territory, from which is lifted by Mielle’s passionate wailing during the chorus, that’s mirrored by another awesome solo. That’s followed by another one. An idiosyncratic power ballad, with weird but great dynamics and an almost anthemic chorus… what’s not to like?! David Coverdale would have killed to have written something like this, I reckon.
The “Art of Noise” is another riffy rocker and a pretty heavy at that, that simply works, although finding itself in the midst of all these good songs it’s vying to get a spotlight, becomes increasingly difficult.
Last but not least, “Sail On” is a bit of a Jeckyl and Hyde of a song, half ballad and half balls out rocker, intertwined into one… it’s pretty good though!
As a bonus, “Don’t Touch Me There 2019” is presented here; an updated version of the band’s first charting single, bringing things full circle. Mielle is a little more Coverdale than Cox, a little more suave, but also a non Brit, so it is what it is… having lived with the original for ages it’s never gonna top that in my heart of hearts, but… it’s good to hear the band paying tribute to its roots.
Unashamedly rocking “Ritual” is a testament to how loud a bunch of “old farts” can be! One louder than any of these young pups that dress up and pose around. Tygers are keeping it real and showing how it’s done! Let those who have understanding hear their mighty roar!