All it takes is one listen, and you’ll know immediately. Denatured (2013) by Real Live Tigers creeps up a bit, but listen closely and you’ll find it’s a soul-shredder. They truly are, in the band’s own words, sad country songs; love gone wrong, broken lives and the struggle to continue onward, an absolute hopelessness – and it’s as lovely and as painful as can be.
Songwriter Tony Presley began Real Live Tigers back in 2004, and has been telling these tales ever since with a sort of quiet beauty that makes way for the rather powerful emotions erupting within. In particular on Denatured, there’s an aching tone throughout that cuts you to the core: “Back then I tore and burned the leaves for proof of power in my body/but it was in my choice,” Presley sings in “If I Was Someone You Could Love.” “It’s good to have a voice in something/like I was something to hear…”
Be sure to see Real Live Tigers play Tuesday night at The Sahara Lounge, 1413 Webberville Rd. Songwriter, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist Steve Arceri and singer/songwriter Lee Jaster round out this great triple bill. The music begins at 8 p.m. Recommended.