Of all the bands that emerged from the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal, the Tygers Of Pan Tang had the fanciest name – taken from a sword-and-sorcery tale by Michael Moorcock, although it sounded like a curry house in the band’s native Whitley Bay.
But if their name was a little pretentious, the Tygers’ music was quite the opposite. These lads were true working class heroes, playing no-nonsense, meat-and-potatoes heavy metal. And they still are, all of 30 years since the NWOBHM fizzled out.
Guitarist Robb Weir is the band’s sole remaining original member, but this new album has many links to their past: producer Chris Tsangarides cut the Tygers’ early 80s records Wild Cat and Spellbound; the cover art by Rodney Matthews is based on his illustration for the band’s 1981 album Crazy Nights; and among these 11 new tracks is a sequel to their 1980 anthem Suzie Smiled – titled Hey Suzie.
Following on from 2008’s Animal Instinct, which was rated 8⁄10 by Classic Rock, Ambush is a solid, old-school metal album, nothing more, nothing less. And there’s integrity in that, if not much money.