Tirra Lirra aspires to a delicacy balancing itself against harsher elements and partially achieves that, but a good deal more is needed in the way of compositional sophistication if it's going to fully emerge in the manner *Pink Live Forever* indicates. Incorporating material from electronica, glitch, primal beats, and associated modern terms, what results is not so much a distinctive sound as a catch basin for Big Country, Ultravox, Teardrop Explodes, Echo & the Bunnymen, The Smiths, and a welter of the more mainstream big labels attempts at marketing musical formulas lacking in complete realization.
The vocals are a big problem here. Alt-music specialty stores are crammed to the gills with the cast-off discs of thousands of bands who seem not to have figured out that weak vocals = weak sales…'cause the human voice is as central to music as any instrument, not the secondary presence too many settle for. Too, the engineering could've used a more knowledgeable hand, though things aren't too bad. The handling of so many disparate inclusions requires a broader knowledge in clashing frequencies, colorative sympathies, and so on.
Tirra Lirra is obviously a band still in its development, though much of this is close to final form and holds potential. Truly good music requires a lot more than many musicians seem to understand, and the punk and New Wave eras, along with their proliferent flash-in-the-pan short-lived offshoots, were remarkably well populated by everything from the slapdash to the half-hearted to the incredibly pretentious to some pretty good efforts, but until composers and musicians inspect what went into the creation of the exemplars they idolized before even picking up an instrument, they'll fall a great ways short of success.
Oh, but I do like the parody of the old Cypress Records label logo that Nowhere Records incorporates, and if it's accidental…well, that's even more ironic.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
Copyright 2009, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.
Website design by David N. Pyles