Tigris - a psychedelic afro-pop band, mixing tribal rhythms, tropical melodies, and sounds from outer space.
Within the the vibrant Israeli Indie scene, Tigris has emerged as a force to be reckoned with. Formed in 2013, the band started as an ethio-jazz group, but quickly developed its own unique sound, influenced by 70’s synth music, afrobeat, surf rock, and melodic pop. The band plays mostly original instrumental compositions, alongside covers of East-African songs, while always remaining true to Tigris’ original style.
The band consists of two percussionists, each of them playing a different and individual set of drums and percussions from Africa and South America, creating together a groove that is both tribal and electronic. The distinctive sound of the keyboard comes from the Orla, an Italian organ from the 70’s, and a Yamaha CS01
mini-synth while the Bass and Guitar sections contribute sweet and melodic lines. Combined with vocal effects and shouts, Tigris creates music that is very hard to label as one genre - it is a power-driven mix of playful and addictive melodies with distinctive groove and sound.
In 2014 the band released their self-titled EP, and since then has been touring the country, playing in clubs, live venues, and Israel’s biggest music festivals. In the summer of 2015 they toured Germany, playing shows in Berlin's Neue Heimat and 'Jazz and Joy' festival at Worms. In November 2016 the band released their highly acclaimed full length debut album entitled 'Gold'.
In 2018 the band released two EP’s, Lightning and Pompido. 'Lightning' is Tigris' most electric-heavy sounding release to date - while ‘Pompido’ reveals a softer and more mellow side of the band. Lightning and Pompido were well loved by critics and fans both in Israel and abroad. In 2019, both EP’s were released as a vinyl in the Japanese record label Tuff Beats. During this year they also fulfilled their dream of touring Ethiopia, where they performed in the famous singer Mulatu Astatke’s legendary music club.
In Israel, Tigris had collaborated with some of the most internationally known indie artists in Israel - Liraz, Gili Yalo, Uri Brauner Kinrot of Boom-Pam, The Ramirez Brothers, and many more. The bands music has drawn attention around the world - especially in the ‘Global Beats’ music scenes - and is often compared to bands like KHRUANGBIN, Meridian Brothers, Altın Gün and more.
Tigris consists of five members - all of them are very well known in the indie and world music scene in Israel.
Ilan Smilan, the guitarist, is the leader and founder of both roots-reggae sensation Zvulun Dub System, and of the Hoodna ֿOrchestra - the most successful Afrobeat act in Israel. Amir Sadot, on bass, is also a member of the Orchestra, and both Ilan and him plays with the international singer Gili Yalo. Roy Hermon, plays a vintage Orla keyboard and synthesizers, and is the leader of Armon band, in which Sadot is also the bass player. His solo albums - including a release in Raw Tapes label - have a cult following. Hermon is also an accomplished trumpet player, and tours as a keyboardist and trumpet player with Evyatar Banai, one of the most beloved Israeli singers.
The percussion section of Tigris consists of Oded Aloni and Itamar Katzir. Trained in Brazil and Senegal, Aloni is a master of Brazilian and Senegalese percussions, and is touring around the world with the Israeli choro band Chorole, and with Marsh Dondurma, Israel’s most popular brass band. Katzir is the youngest member of the band - He joined Tigris in 2017 at the age of 21, replacing the internationally-known Ben Ayalon in the African percussion section. Katzir has studied hand percussions since childhood, and is an accomplished Middle-Eastern, Latin, and African percussionist.
Together, the five members of Tigris create a cohesive unite, that does not sound like any other, on earth, or beyond. These days, Tigris is further exploring the connections between primal art and modern sounds, and walking the musical line between eastern and western, between earth and the universe.