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Published: Friday, 2/7/2014 - Updated: 2 years ago


Silent Lions ready to roar

Toledo duo set to release ‘The Compartments’ during free show at Ottawa Tavern

Matt Klein, left, and Dean Tartaglia of the Silent Lions. Matt Klein, left, and Dean Tartaglia of the Silent Lions.

The record snowfalls here in northwest Ohio and through much of the Midwest and Northeast haven’t deterred Dean Tartaglia and Matt Klein from undertaking an 80-city tour to play their brand of music in front of new fans.

Their band, the Silent Lions, returns home to Toledo to even more snow and to play a free album-release party at 10 tonight at the Ottawa Tavern, 1817 Adams St.

“The Compartments” is the band’s second EP and contains six lush tracks of what the duo call heavy soul. Like their first EP, “The Parliaments,” the album was recorded in Detroit, where the Silent Lions have been “kind of adopted into the scene there,” Tartaglia said on a rare off day from somewhere in West Virginia after playing a show in Muncie, Ind., and headed to the East Coast in a minivan towing a trailer with their gear.

Tartaglia, 23, who lives in the Old West End, plays the bass and sampler simultaneously as well as singing with manipulated vocals. He is looking forward to touching base with the hometown fans.

“We haven’t played a proper show in the Old West End in about six months,” he said. “We don’t get to play Toledo as often as we used to. It’s going to be really cool.”

Both Tartaglia and Klein have played in several bands in Toledo but Tartaglia said neither of them was taking their music seriously until they started playing together. Also, playing in the underrated Toledo market and in the vast Detroit scene allowed for more room for experimentation.

“We use a lot of pedals and a lot of amps,” Tartaglia said. “It transfers well to the stage. About 95 percent of what you hear on the album we can reproduce on stage.”

The Silent Lions do crank out a lot of noise for being just a two-man band, and Klein, 30, takes that as a compliment.

“All of our songs have a unified sound now,” the drummer and backing vocalist said. “The new album is a great step forward for us.”

Klein, who lives in West Toledo, said the tour has gone well so far and playing live, whether in front of friends and family or on the road in front of a bunch of strangers, is inspiring.

“Our expectations are always the same,” he said, “to be miked up and play with the same energy. We like seeing the crowd’s reactions and having something to bond over after the show.”

The Silent Lions will play a free homecoming, album-release party at 10 p.m. today at Ottawa Tavern, 1817 Adams St. Jacob Sigman and Flint Eastwood also will perform. You can see a YouTube video for the song “Stolen in the Heat of the Moment” at bit.ly/1eXHKvp and buy the band’s music at silentlions.bandcamp.com/album/the-compartments. They can also be heard on Spotify.

Contact Bob Cunningham at bcunningham@theblade.com or 419-724-6506.

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