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The Tigers Have Spoken Live

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Audio CD, Live, November 9, 2004
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Tigers is a charged collection of new original material, selective covers, and one previously hard-to-find cut--"Favorite," the first song Neko ever wrote herself from start to finish. The Tigers Have Spoken highlights the vibrant, joyful side of Case's music--a side which, though it doesn't often get mentioned in the press, her listeners have wanted to hear preserved for some time.

It might seem a bit of a letdown to have waited 26 months (Case is such a transcendent singer, her fans were waiting the two years between Blacklisted and Tigers) for a brief, live effort that's half cover versions. But this disc is wide-ranging and superb, that rare breed of live album (think At Budokan and Small Town Romance) which ranks amongst an artist's finest, most representative work. Recorded in 2004 in Toronto and Chicago, Case is absolutely on fire for the ballads and the ass-kicking tunes. This is largely due to a ripping backing band composed of the Sadies and Jon Rauhouse, with fellow Corn Sister Carolyn Mark and Kelly Hogan lending their vocal talents (the effect's like Trio, but better). The album's title is discussed in a brief example of Case's between-song banter, an expression of her off-color humor which will not surprise those lucky enough to have seen her perform before. And if you never have yourself, this here's the next best thing. --Mike McGonigal

Recommended Albums by Neko Case and Friends

The Virginian

Furnace Room Lullaby


The Sadies, Favourite Colours

Kelly Hogan, Beneath the Country Underdog

The Corn Sisters, The Other Women

1. If You Knew
2. Soulful Shade Of Blue
3. Hex
4. Train From Kansas City
5. The Tigers Have Spoken
6. Blacklisted
7. Loretta
8. Favorite
9. Rated X
10. This Little Light
11. Wayfaring Stranger
12. untitled

Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 9, 2004)
  • Original Release Date: 2004
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Live
  • Label: Anti
  • ASIN: B00064NL6A
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #78,012 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Fred Rudofsky on November 10, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is yet another tremendous Neko Case release, and her first official live record (unless you count OTHER WOMEN with her Corn Sisters cohort Carolyn Mark). Though it's a short cd, it succeeds on many levels in showing the full range of Neko's talents. Two new songs, co-written with Canada's finest band, The Sadies, stand out. "If You Knew" is an upbeat lament about a naive love, while the title track is an allegory (perhaps) about not only how we treat this planet's most beautiful creatures but how we humans have lost something in the quest to be civilized. Always an amazing interpreter, like Emmylou Harris, Neko can find a song and make it her own. "Soulful Shade of Blue" and "The Train from Kansas City" sound like nuggets from the golden age of radio in the late 1960's--Neko's voice soars and entices while joined by the Sadies and Carolyn Mark and Kelly Hogan on harmonies. Hearing Neko tear it up on the garage classic "Loretta" and minutes later paying tribute to Loretta Lynn herself (a kickass rendition of "Rated X") is revelatory about how diverse and classy Neko's tastes are. It's no wonder she has such genius as a singer=songwriter--the two originals she revisits here, "Favorite" (see the must-have EP CANADIAN AMP) and the title cut of the essential BLACKLISTED resonate vividly (I can picture the audience just being mesmerized by Neko's voice and Jon Rauhouse's pedal steel guitar). Never one to forget her grandmother's roots, Neko with support from Jim and and Jennie and the Pinetops raises the roof with the gospel of "This Little Light of Mine". Yet that's not all! "Wayfaring Stranger" gets choral help from the ideaCity03--a Toronto audience!--that is one of the most sublime, fun moments of interaction I've ever heard.Read more ›
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By S. Moore on November 13, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I've seen quite a few reviews of Neko Case's latest offering, the live 'the tigers have spoken', and alot of them seem to be making the point that due to the high number of covers in the set, added with it being at least two years since her last studio release, the excellent 'Blacklisted', that it could be seen that 'tigers' is almost a bit of a cop out and stop gap to keep the fans happy until her next studio release due in spring 2005.

That could not be further from the truth.

'the tigers have spoken' is a rarity in the genre of live albums. In that rather than been given a 'greatest hits package, just played live', Neko gives us something that is new and fresh and engaging. Long time Neko fans have been dying to hear her backed by a full band (drummer complete!) live, the role admirably filled by toronto's finest, the sadies, as well regular sidekicks in crime, jon rauhouse, kelly hogan, and carolyn marks (corn sister extradonaire), not leaving out some newcomers, jim, jennie and the pinetops. As well as having her cover of the most brilliant 'hex' finally captured for repeated listings (a popular request ever since she performed it on austin city limits), and the traditional song 'little light of mine' that she has performed live in the past with both the sadies and one of her side projects, the corn sisters.

New songs 'if you only knew' and 'the tigers have spoken' are some of Neko's best work to date, the later showing an interesting and exciting more rockier edge than some of her past work, which fans of 'the new pornographers' would probably appreciate.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Chuck Hancock on March 1, 2006
Format: Audio CD
My shelves are stuffed with CDs that never get played. This one gets played every few days, sometimes more than once. For me, that says a lot. I usually buy a couple of CDs a week, at least, and I just keep coming back to this one. It's concise, energetic, with twangy wall of sound arrangements. It rocks. It's one of those live albums where you can feel the energy from one end to the other. It reminds me of The Who's Live at Leeds (the original, rather than the reissued longer version) where every song counts and there's no filler.

Neko Case's singing is perfect for the material. She has a great voice and knows how to use it. I don't know how she does it, but it's almost unreal. She has a sweet voice, but not too sweet, more like ginger snaps than honey. There are few singers who do as well as her so consistently. The backup singers do a wonderful job, too. It sounds like they really have got the hang of it.

I'm not a fan of regular country music, but this is like punk country or something. They band seems to have taken the cool parts, and left the bogus parts outside the door. The playing is just right with a mix of electric, acoustic, steel guitars, banjo (but not too much banjo), and plenty of reverb. The rhythm section is good, too, anchoring the generally tight arrangements. There's no excess baggage here in the form of extended solos. There are solos, but they make their point and get out of the way. Eleven songs in about 38 minutes. The band doesn't waste your time.

No excess songs either. All are well chosen, and they all speak to matters of the heart and mind in some way, stuff like love, loss and death, songs of the spirit. Some are what I would call poetic, and some are more literal, some have a little bit of each.
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