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Tamer Animals [CD]

Other Lives Audio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
Price: £8.67 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £10. Details
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
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Music

Image of album by Other Lives

Photos

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Biography

At the crossroads of U.S. 177 and State Highway 51, in the heart of “Cowboy Country”, in the midst of a vast Mid-western plain, sits Stillwater, Oklahoma, hometown to the band Other Lives and its gifted singer/composer and multi-instrumentalist bandleader, Jesse Tabish.

At first glance, this evocatively named small city, so remote from the hyperactive music scenes of NY and ... Read more in Amazon's Other Lives Store

Visit Amazon's Other Lives Store
for all the music, 3 photos, discussions, and more.

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Tamer Animals + Other Lives (Dig) + Gracious Tide, Take Me Home
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Product details

  • Audio CD (29 Aug 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Play It Again Sam
  • ASIN: B004XG5XW2
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 35,818 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Dark Horse
2. As I Lay My Head Down
3. For 12
4. Tamer Animals
5. Dust Bowl III
6. Weather
7. Old Statues
8. Woodwind
9. Desert
10. Landforms
11. Heading East

Product Description

BBC Review

There's no track this writer's thrashed more this year than Other Lives' single For 12. It's suspenseful, dreamy and awestruck in equal measures, combining undulating strings (possibly Mellotron), lightly galloping Morricone rhythms, subtle shades of piano and acoustic guitar and vocals that run the gauntlet from sighing to falsetto. Imagine an eagle's eye view over an unbroken stretch of Brokeback Mountain prairie. Or imagine Fleet Foxes influenced by Radiohead's Pyramid Song. And if For 12 is the absolute jewel here, the rest isn't far behind.

Tamer Animals is the Oklahoma quintet's second album, following 2009's eponymous album and, back in 2006, the debut under former alias Kunek. Neither matches this watermark of quiet grandeur or strikes the same balance between lavishness and restraint. If band lynchpin Jesse Tabish's choruses don't instantly lasso like, say, Adele or a Simon Cowell prodigy, his tunes appear to swoon through the air and might haunt your deep sleep. File under Pastoral Americana alongside Fleet Foxes and Midlake (you could bet your house on at least three members sporting beards), but there is a major difference: Tabish worships instrumental music, and classical minimalists Steve Reich and Philip Glass, which accounts for the album's pulsating orchestrations. Piano, bassoon, bass clarinet, violin, trumpet, French horn, cello - in Tabishworld, instruments harmonise as much as, if not more than, voices. If his restrained, wistful, almost shy vocal is double-tracked for bonus comfort, it's an unbroken stretch of land away from Crosby, Stills & Nash and any notion of 70s retro.

Even more than Tabish's influences, there's liable to be something in Oklahoma's water, or those huge skies, that gives Other Lives their panoramic aura. Perhaps Tabish is the modern equivalent of the 'singing cowboy', roaming that prairie and drinking up the Mexican and Anglo-Saxon influences from America's south-west (though strictly speaking, Oklahoma is north of Texas and geographically central-southern) which moulded the 'Western' half of C&W.

Lyrically as well, Tabish sounds enthralled by nature's ineffable power. Old Statues - the most Morricone-esque cut, with a fantastic lonesome patina - documents how man-made structures will eventually fall back to earth. Other tracks are titled Dust Bowl III, Weather and Desert, reinforcing Tabish's minimalist bent. There is an orchestral finale, Heading East (so not the usual western gold trail to California? East to Reich and Glass in New York, perhaps?), but even here he manages to embrace 'epic' without a hint of bombast, and all in two-and-a-half minutes. For all Tamer Animals' expansive horizons, its only lasts 40 minutes. But it's the most uniquely sublime, meticulous and heroic 40 minutes of 2011.

--Martin Aston

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Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Balletic in its beauty 9 Sep 2011
By S.R.J VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
Title of review sounds a tad pompous eh? Well its damnwell true!

Lush and wistful,beautifully produced and an absolute delight on the ears. It has a similar feel to Fleet Foxes, but where they sound like something else in a modern day guise this lot are far from copyists, with hints at Sigur Ros mixed in there.

This is their second offering and is an altogethor different creature, full of wonderful orchestration with violin, trumpet,french horn, cello etc etc, it transports you into a world of almost minimalist classical composition, but holds back sufficiently to not be overblown or pompous.

Not a hint of harshness, lyrically or musically, it just washes over you, track after track, effortlessly sliding into your subconscious in a way I haven't encountered previously.

The band has spent 3 years fine tuning every meticulous detail on this album and it shows, whilst equally sounding effortless it is also deliciously complex and enthralling, a total contradiction, in that its some of the most relaxing music you are likely to hear yet utterly engaging.

Musically it lies somewhere between what is termed neu folk (I know I'm not keen on it either, but it gives you an idea) and some sort of soundtrack to a modern day spaghetti western.

I have never given an album 5 stars, perfection is something I have not come across in 40 years of being serious about music, but heck, this comes as close as perfect as I have heard. so 4 and a half stars at least.
Do not hesitate to buy this, I'm surprised it doesn't come with a money back guarantee in the event of dissatisfaction.

S.R.J
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good year for music......... 23 Dec 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
One of many unsung recent offerings which will no doubt be restricted to the ears of the priveleged few. After having viewed several video clips of the band performing tracks from this and the previous album I was struck by the detailed construction of the music and the apparent intensity of the musicians performance. This comes over clearly when listening to the elaborately arranged music which could still easily be enjoyed playing in the background but I feel needs to be heard with no distractions. As has been mentioned in previous reviews it could be described as indie music with a lush orchestral 'coating' and becomes quite addictive with repeated plays. Now chasing up their previous recordings (the earlier under band name 'Kunek') which have also attracted positive customer reviews.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Balletic in its beauty 19 Aug 2011
By S.R.J VINE VOICE
Format:Audio CD
Title of review sounds a tad pompous eh? Well its damnwell true!

Lush and wistful,beautifully produced and an absolute delight on the ears. It has a similar feel to Fleet Foxes, but where they sound like something else in a modern day guise this lot are far from copyists, with hints at Sigur Ros mixed in there.

This is their second offering and is an altogethor different creature, full of wonderful orchestration with violin, trumpet,french horn, cello etc etc, it transports you into a world of almost minimalist classical composition, but holds back sufficiently to not be overblown or pompous.

Not a hint of harshness, lyrically or musically, it just washes over you, track after track, effortlessly sliding into your subconscious in a way I haven't encountered previously.

The band has spent 3 years fine tuning every meticulous detail on this album and it shows, whilst equally sounding effortless it is also deliciously complex and enthralling, a total contradiction, in that its some of the most relaxing music you are likely to hear yet utterly engaging.

Musically it lies somewhere between what is termed neu folk (I know I'm not keen on it either, but it gives you an idea) and some sort of soundtrack to a modern day spaghetti western.

I have never given an album 5 stars, perfection is something I have not come across in 40 years of being serious about music, but heck, this comes as close as perfect as I have heard. so 4 and a half stars at least.
Do not hesitate to buy this, I'm surprised it doesn't come with a money back guarantee in the event of dissatisfaction.

S.R.J
Was this review helpful to you?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Album of the year 15 Dec 2011
By IainM
Format:Audio CD
Heard one song from this album purely by chance as I was flicking through the radio stations very late one Saturday night driving home from a gig. The song was Dust Bowl III and at that time of the night it's exactly what my head and ringing ears needed. I bought this album the next day on the strength of that one song. Initially I likened Other Lives to Fleet Foxes, perhaps a bit of Bon Iver but the more I listen to them the more it all comes together as their own sound.

Having read up a bit more on the band I know that they started as an instrumental 3-piece and although they now are a quintet they pride themselves on their musical arrangements. It shows! The strings, piano and cello create beautiful sound-scapes (For 12), the driving drums make a few of the tracks quite epic, especially when played at a loud volume (Tamer Animals/ Dust Bowl III), and all this is fronted by fantastic melodies, thoughtful lyrics and great harmonies.

For me there's not one bad track on this album, so glad I happened upon them by chance. The best CD I've bought this year.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Other Lives
This is a masterpiece.I have had this for a few years now and keep coming back to it.It's a finer,more musical work than Mercury Rev's Deserter's Songs. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Mj Elton
5.0 out of 5 stars Tamer Animals
Every song of this album is a little magical, ethereal trip. After first listening I found I had to listen it again, in whole. Beautiful.
Published 17 months ago by Georgios
5.0 out of 5 stars Record of the year
I saw Other Lives some months ago in Oostende (Belgium). This band has everything what a great band shoud have : brilliant songs, powerful singers, multi instrumentalists, etc. Read more
Published 22 months ago by Gunther De Smet
5.0 out of 5 stars Drive with care
not entirely sure how I came by this CD, it dropped through my door, then I found it again in the glovebox whilst driving home, it was perfect for my mood, except I really wanted... Read more
Published 23 months ago by NICK COCKAYNE
5.0 out of 5 stars A Beautifully Crafted Album
Tamer Animals is arguably the most important event in alternative music since The Antlers' Hospice. The ambitious classical premise of their eponymous debut album could at times... Read more
Published 24 months ago by Cormac
5.0 out of 5 stars wow
Wow, this is such a great album. Deeply moving with plenty of goose bump moments. A sort of folk rock not very unlike Midlake`s The courage of others. Read more
Published on 27 May 2012 by Oostrijck
5.0 out of 5 stars other lives
love this album great musically
quite different from anything
that is about at moment
gets better with every listen
I have a wide range of albums
from the... Read more
Published on 14 May 2012 by gardenpeat
5.0 out of 5 stars Tamer Animals
This group are going to be big - their music evokes the flat endless prairie lands of America ; their influences are myriad- file under Indie rock or folk but not that easy to... Read more
Published on 14 April 2012 by Charlie
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully atmospheric
This is one of those albums you close your eyes to and drift off to another place with images created by the sound. A truly beautiful album that deserves only praise. Read more
Published on 29 Dec 2011 by Miss L Clements
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Music and a Different Sound
This album has become one of my favourites. One of the top three albums bought this year it's songs seem to be constantly going round in my head. Read more
Published on 13 Nov 2011 by Mr. Russell Whyman
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