You write the reviews: The Tiger Lillies, New Players Theatre, London
A high operatic note breaks the hush of the theatre in perfect pitch, only to be broken itself by a barrage of crude raspberry noises. The Tiger Lillies are back in London, with a vengeance.
Wednesday, 23 April 2008
high operatic note breaks the hush of the theatre in perfect pitch,
only to be broken itself by a barrage of crude raspberry noises. The
Tiger Lillies are back in London, with a vengeance.
they've brought here for a three-week run is called Seven Deadly Sins.
Based on the Hieronymus Bosch painting, it's a twisting musical
pilgrimage through all the fun things you're not supposed to do if you
want to avoid going to Hell, though one can't help but suspect that it
may be far too late for the band themselves. It's told through a story
charting the wicked descent of the puppets Punch and Jude, with each
sin they commit punctuated by a new song from the Tiger Lillies, along
with a few from their vaults that those who have followed them through
theirdebauched depravity will relish. Even if you've heard their songs
before, watching them being performed adds a sumptuous, visual
dimension, a cavalcade of theatrics, spontaneity, showmanship and
humour that will draw you into their underground world of sin. It will
make you feel gleefully evil. And you'll want to see them again.
Deadly Sins is billed as a punk cabaret, probably because
"Brechtian-style cabaret with punk lyrics and uncomfortably twisted
Gypsy themes played on folk instruments" doesn't look as good on the
posters. Basically, if you were on a fairground carousel in Satan's
back garden, it's the kind of music you would hear as you go nervously
The painted ringleader, Martyn Jacques, writes all of the
band's songs, and plays the accordion, ukulele and piano to boot. His
tremendous vocal range and powerful operatic voice are peerless, and he
uses them to their full extent during the show as his expressiveness
takes the audience from the addictive "Heroin and Cocaine" to the
infectious "Anger", and from the melancholy of "Life Is Mean" to the
guilty laughter provoked by "Kick a Baby".
Adrian Huge on drums
and percussion, and Adrian Stout on contra bass, musical saw and
theremin, both weave in their own prolific talents to complete the
itinerant musical trio, while the vaudevillian puppeteer Nathan Evans
and the fire-eating burlesque dancer Ophelia Bitz provide links between
The result is a show that's unique, unapologetically
offensive, raucously funny and full of music that you'll immediately
want to inflict on all your friends and family, whether they like it or
not. And, of course, the Tiger Lillies will always be happy to give you
an excuse to sin.
To 26 Apr (08704 296 883)
Belinda Wilson, Airline supervisor, London