Tiger Sex at the Griffin 10/9/13 by Shane Jackson
One of my favorite spots to go get my weekend freak on Downtown is the Griffin. The bar’s front room is classy and inviting, while the floor area in the back is perfect for dancing all night long to a DJ. However, until seeing Tiger Sex there on October 9th, I had never seen a live band perform in the space. Having been told in the past by Rusty Maples’ Dewane brothers that the acoustics in the Griffin’s back room aren’t exactly conducive to live band setups, I was a bit apprehensive going into the show. Fortunately, I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the sound, and my only advice to future Griffin show-goers is to bring earplugs!
Tiger Sex is a local garage rock/proto-punk band led by charismatic vocalist Kelly TigerSex. Prior to the show, I watched the band’s music video for “Prostitution,” so I knew I was in for some hard-hitting, erotically charged punk music. What I didn’t know was just how much the provocative lead singer’s live performance would enthrall me. Wearing only tight black pants and a black bra for most of the show, TigerSex prowled around the room like an apex predator in heat. She seductively gyrated on her microphone stand like a beckoning stripper, but some primal fear inside of me told me that if I got too close, she’d tear out my throat and feed me to her tiger kittens. Channeling more animals than just tigers, the band could easily be called “Doberman Sex,” as TigerSex barks her vocals with the ferocity of a junkyard dog. Further contributing to the canine comparison was the studded collar adorning her neck, and the band even performed a cover of the Stooge’s 1969 classic, “I Wanna Be Your Dog.”
Though TigerSex is clearly the focal point, her appeal would diminish without the competent backing of her band mates. Guitarist Kei is more than just a power-chord pounder; he’s a fiery soloist who can turn a standard 12-bar blues into blistering garage punk gold. At one point, he was soloing so hard that he broke a string, but that didn’t stop him from plowing ahead at full force and finishing the song.
In all, I was more than impressed by this group of musicians, and I would see them again in a heartbeat. Hopefully they play more shows Downtown!