Since a lot of our long-held and cherished myths seem to be waning, is it any wonder that many of us are just rolling along to the beat of our own ideas? To see your life as epic (and lucrative) is an old idea, but it has produced some of the most fascinating art. Arizona duo Miniature Tigers are no mere navel-gazers, though. Tell It to the Volcano is epic and unselfconsciously personal because it plays with the myths we create around our experiences and relationships. These songs say that, yes, those things do matter that much, but don’t kid yourself — everyone else has them too.
That generous, blunt spirit is delivered with some sugar, though. These songs are tasty power pop with a dash of the indie, with crunchy, punchy guitars, keys and jittery but brave vocals. The best tracks, like “The Wolf” or “Tchaikovsky & Solitude,” blend metaphor with gritty observations on love chased, gained, brooded on and abandoned. Slower numbers, like the opener, “Cannibal Queen,” lie in wait for the listener to find rich harmonies and odd phrasing.
Miniature Tigers prefer to show us ourselves through the ages, historical figures and through various species, as if to imply that anyone or anything will relate to the tales of woe and awe. Tell It to the Volcano is a smart little gem, as is the band. It’s hard to find any better example of craft and balls than this record.