Paper Tigers are a Belfast based power alt-rock band. Formed by Michael Smyth in October 2018, armed with a handful of songs and a drive to do something completely different from any previous projects Michael set about gathering his fellow Tigers. Looking to capture lightning in a bottle, this led to an extended and tumultuous search with the line up finally being settled upon in September 2019. Paper Tigers are Hayley Norton on vocals, Michael Smyth on guitar and vocals, Mickey Teague on drums and Stevey Henry on bass and vocals.
Initial shows introduced Paper Tigers as an alt-rock powerhouse, pounding drums, driving rhythms and more hooks than a slaughterhouse floor. Once the line up was cemented Paper Tigers wasted no time entering the studio to record a handful of songs and swiftly announced ‘Gucci Smiles’ as their debut single. ‘Gucci Smiles’ was recorded live in one take with Jonny at Bear Cat, capturing the energy of the band and of the song was paramount to the recording process. Its the sound of the band tearing through the song like only they know-how.
A fuzzed-out angry hornet riff cuts out of the speakers and leaves its trail throughout the song, giving way to acid-washed lyrics and a gargantuan rhythm section. Gloria wasn’t wrong when she said rhythm was going to get ya, Micky T and Stevey create a drive and pulse throughout the song as it moves into a chorus that stomps harder than Godzilla tearing through downtown Tokyo. Hayley’s vocals drip effortless cool while Michaels guitar moves between scuzzy fuzz and overdriven stabs that would have even the most Beavis of Buttheaded metalheads nodding along in agreement.
The single was released on November 1st earning the band support slots on tour with life and reviews saying: ‘Gucci Smiles has a larger than life chorus that will have you screaming it from the top of your lungs’ and ‘When they performed their single “Gucci Smiles” it was plain to see this band has a certain specialness about them.’
Gucci Smiles is available across all good streaming services if you cant stream it, you should probably cancel your subscription.
The video showcases the band were they feel most at home; live and tearing up stages across the country. Shot by Bob Logan, the 5th Tiger, across a number of different shows the video captures the energy and passion of any Paper Tigers show.
Catch the band at the following dates:
Dec 4th, w/ Life and Slyrydes, The Academy 2, Dublin
Dec 5th w/ Life and Happy Out, McHughs, Belfast
Dec 19th w/TBC, Fibber Magees, Dublin
Dec 21st w/ TBC, Pavillion, Belfast
Count it off!!
FFO: Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Royal Blood, Wolf Alice, Pretty Girls Makes Graves, Paramore, Marmozets