Rose Tiger

Rose Tiger is not an easy tiger to pin down. The glam trio’s debut album is a rock opera with prog leanings that could be described as a labour of love for its chief architect Cyprien Jacquet. //The End Forever// is a trashy, surrealist gesamtkunstwerk that incorporates manga and video games into its universe, as well as songs about dinosaurs and robots. Yep, you heard.

Everybody always asks about the dinosaurs and robots,” says Frenchman Jacquet, hiding his exasperation well. “It’s always the first thing we’re asked about, but really, they’re only on two or three songs out of a total of 14.”

//The End Forever// project started as an imaginary land in Jacquet’s head called Archaeopolis. While the Annecy-based musician has played drums with numerous bands in France over the years (including Nouvelle Vague and Air Bag One) he’s been stealthily developing a mindmap of a secret world with this record.

It’s been there since my childhood,” he admits, “with this story and this character Wend¥ Kill Bass, who is my alter-ego. It’s very much inspired by Japanese role playing games from the first PlayStation, like //Final Fantasy VII// and //VIII// from the nineties.”

Another influence is his father’s record collection, including artists such as Queen, Frank Zappa, Black Sabbath and Deep Purple: “When I started my music career in France, most people were a little allergic to prog, but when I made this album I was like, ‘I don’t care anymore, I’m just gonna do what I want.’ I really go back to my 70s roots, and you can really hear the prog influence on //I Will Go Back//, especially on the intro and in particular the drum fills.”

When Jacquet moved to London in 2019 he recruited English singer and guitarist Domi Hawken who he knew already from when she lived in Paris. “I wasn’t shocked [by the material] because it’s Cyprian,” says Hawken, “Nothing shocks me having known him for so long. But I was like, ‘Really? You want to release an album singing about dinosaurs? Like, I love dinosaurs, but I just never thought I’d be onstage touring around France singing about them.”

Irene Gonzalez, meanwhile, came on board after looking on Gumtree to find something to do alongside her summer job: “I literally Googled ‘band looking for singer and keyword player in London’, and it was the first thing that popped up. I hadn’t used Gumtree before and I don’t think I’ve used it since.”

The trio were recording the album at Flood’s studio in Willesden Green, at least until they ran out of money. Then came the pandemic and Jacquet found himself back in France thinking the project of his dreams was all but over. Luckily, in stepped French label Upton Park, who blew bubbles up Jacquet’s derriere and told him to get the album finished and they’d pick up the tab. “It never happens anymore, this kind of thing,” he says, with a shrug.

What comes next for Rose Tiger remains to be seen, though Jacquet hopes it will be simpler: “I feel like I’ve had enough writing about fairytales and dinosaurs in post-apocalyptic worlds.”



Cyprien Jacquet (songwriter, singer, drummer and producer), Domi Hawken (guitarist and singer) Irene Gonzalez (keyboard player and singer)

Sounds like:

Big tunes that meet at the intersection of 70s glam and 80s electro.

Current release:

//The End Forever// is out now on Upton Park Records.


— Jeremy Allen

From "Limelight - Rose Tiger" Prog Reprinted with permission.


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