Tilly and the Wall

By leigh kelsey

Tilly and the Wall
Team Love

Tilly and the WallI fell in love with Tilly and the Wall before I had even heard them. My jaw dropped when I saw their website, which is currently covered in hearts and crocodiles with flashing neon bands of color. Good graphic design will do that to a girl. I ordered 'Wild Like Children' shortly after my friend Jason Anderson (of K records fame) told me, and I quote, "They will be your NEW FAVORITE BAND OF ALL TIME!!!" Let's just say he wasn't far off. 'Wild Like Children' was the only disc in my stereo for weeks, because it truly is that good. I went on a crusade telling all of my friends how good this record makes me feel. It's hard to put a finger on what specifically made me go gaga for, as their fanbase fondly calls them, The Tillies.
Instead of using a traditional band set-up, TATW toss aside the notion of having of a proper drummer and opt for hand claps and tap dancing instead and various other forms of percussion. The beats are infectious regardless of what they are made with. In some respects, this is like an Elephant 6 record. There are "woos" and "ba-bas". The harmonies are creamy and dream-like. Their friends join in and help out with the recording process. They use non-conventional instruments to create vibrant and catchy bursts of sound. The lyrics sometimes touch upon the nonsensical. Regardless, this doesn't sound much like anything ever put out on Elephant 6.

Tilly and the Wall Band PhotoWhile I would say they are an indie pop band, 'Wild Like Children' spans the entire range of the indie subgenre. 'Nights of the Living Dead', sounds like a fluffed up Thermals song. 'A Perfect Fit' sounds like any number of syrupy electropop songs that have, in the past couple of years, come into fashion. The song structure, the content and even the lyrical style of 'I Always Knew', are similar to Rilo Kiley (minus the mention of plane crashes). Nevertheless, Tilly and the Wall create their own sound and keep the album feeling fresh throughout.

My favorite tune off the record is 'Bessa', a song about a love leaving, and dreaming about better times. It's an old storyline that's been made time and time again throughout the ages, but the Tillies add their special formula together to make a special sweet and sad version, ending with: "I guess I better wake up then. I guess I better get going. I guess I better move on now and find my own way." It's the 'I Will Survive' of the indie world.

'Wild Like Children' was the first release on Conor Oberst's new record label, Team Love, which is a subsidiary of Saddle Creek. Having the advantage of being on an indie superstar's label, they've supported Pedro the Lion and Rilo Kiley on tours thus far. Their live show is rivaled to be even better than their record, complete with the tap dancing! At the rate at which people are falling in love with the Tillies, I'm certain that next time around they'll be the ones headlining.