Sadly there is not a single perfect Archive::Tar::* module out there. Either a module offers incomplete API, (was) buggy, or it is crippled/limited in some way. Plus, the modules are mostly incompatible with one another. And that's why TIMTOWTDI.
For the task of just listing files in an archive, for example, it seems only Archive::Tar and Archive::Tar::Wrapper are usable. Archive::Tar::Wrapper is fast (because it utilizes external C-based tar utility) and does not load all contents of an archive into memory, but requires writing to temporary files and of course requires a tar utility so portability to non-Unix systems might be an issue.