The Tiger Lillies were formed in 1989 and a quarter of a century later they remain one of the most unique, provocative and genre-defying bands one could come across. Thank God they are none the wiser, softer or nicer and they keep finding new ways to shock, enchant and amuse their audience with their breath taking live performances that will utterly bewilder yet fully entertain you.
The world of The Tiger Lillies is dark, peculiar and varied, with moments of deep sadness, cruel black humour and immense beauty. This unique "anarchic Brechtian street opera trio" tours the world playing songs about “anything that doesn’t involve beautiful blonde girls and boys running at the meadow” to quote their founder Martyn Jacques. Hence, their songs cover all the dark aspects of life, from prostitution and drug addiction to violence and despair. Always with a touch of twisted humor and sharp irony The Tiger Lillies “point an implicit accusing finger back at us: what on Earth are we doing, laughing at this stuff?”. Their music is a mixture of pre-war Berlin cabaret, anarchic opera and gypsy music, echoing the voices of Bertolt Brecht and Jacques Brel. The Tiger Lillies shock, amuse and entertain in a postmodern vaudeville way, with their inimitable in-yer-face performances, where no limit should be taken for granted.
Cold Night in Soho is inspired by Martyn Jacques’ life in the racy and often heartless world of Soho in the 1980s, where he lived amidst the prostitutes and drug fiends, the sleazemongers and local eccentrics who would all go on to populate his songs over the years. Before the widespread sanitisation of central London in recent times, the closing of the sex shops and the XXX-rated cinemas, there was risk, excitement and colour there, in all its gaudy and unexpected variety.
This new Tiger Lillies’ album and live show is a series of snapshots of a vanished Soho: women trapped in the endless cycle of turning tricks in clip joints, career alcoholics of Soho’s legendary drinking dens, starched soldiers of the Salvation Army making forays into these degenerate streets. It’s also a memoir of Martyn’s experiences as a busker in Finsbury Park as well as the Tiger Lillies very first gigs at the King’s Head in Islington. Significantly, this is also the band’s first album not connected to a theatre show in about ten years, thus representing a return to song-writing for the sake of the songs alone. To mark this high-profile occasion the album is released on a CD as well as a limited-edition vinyl pressing.