No Fantasy Required
, March 8th, 2016 21:18
No Fantasy Required. It's a very Tiga title. In fact, everything Tiga seems to do is 'very Tiga'. The Montreal born DJ and producer has been DJing most of his life, but first came to attention with his mixes for the International Deejay Gigolos label – a name that pretty much made him – around the electroclash flourish of the early 21st century, and has managed to carve out a career out of the originally thin premise of licking legs in an airport.
This is only his third album; seven years since 2009's Ciao, and another six since Sexor. In that time he's been DJing solidly around the world, and knocked out a handful of singles and a couple of collaborations with Boyz Noise, as well as remixing all sorts of acts from The xx, Depeche Mode and Iggy Azalea, as well as running a label and being a fairly international cat.
It's a noble career, and one he has handled deftly over the years. However 2015 saw the debut of Tiga as a live performer, with his own show becoming more of an event than it had been before. As a result, No Fantasy Required has allowed him to flourish as an all round entertainer, as if to realise the full concept of the character.
There is a duality in Tiga. One side of him likes to lay on the minimalist punishing bangers, the other side is an acute pop nous. With each of his albums, he's balanced out both sides to form a cohesive all round situation, making him at home both on, perhaps ideally, a yacht or heads down in a bassbin.
With each album, Tiga's worked with different producers, including 2manydjs and Gonzales, with No Fantasy, it's mainly Matthew Dear and his live companion Jori Hulkkonen. There's also hook-ups with Hudson Mohawke, Paranoid London and longtime collaborator Jake Shears of Scissor Sisters.
As a singles artist, he's second to none. Make no mistake, when he finally decides to pop out a collection of his biggest tunes - 'You Gonna Want Me', 'Shoes', 'Sunglasses At Night', 'Far From Home' etc - it will be up there with New Order's Substance. With the epic 'Plush', the crying-at-the-disco tearful Techno of 'Don't Break My Heart', the massive 'Bugatti' and now the Shears team-up 'Make Me Fall In Love', he's already made No Fantasy Required essential listening.
Having peppered previous efforts with covers before, No Fantasy Required doesn't feature any. Sure, there's cheeky steals, of all things, Lene Lovich's 'Lucky Number' in 'Having So Much Fun'. Unintentionally or not, even the album title is a possible nod to the semi-luxe bigness of Phil Collins' No Jacket Required. There's even a track called 'Blondes Have More Fun', although the flirtiness of Rod Stewart in this instance is replaced with a more vulnerable and darker meaning as Tiga lays himself bare as a songwriter rather than some jetset electro observer.
No Fantasy Required is full of the sex, humour and doof longtime admirers have come to expect, a voyage wherein art and arch meld effortlessly, knowing when and where to stop before going too far. In a phase where DJ-turned-musician albums are remarkable in their disappointment, this is a triumph.