20 Jun 2019
UsernamePassword

Remember Me? | Join | Recover
Click here to sign in via social networking

Julian Temple Band - Album Review: Antarctica

12 Jun 2018 // A review by butch181

Frequently described as an alternative rock group, hailing from Dunedin, the Julian Temple Band like to blur the lines between genres; incorporating blues, jazz, surf rock, as well as indie pop into their music. The group have evolved over the years, over five studio albums since their formation in 2004, with Antarctica making it six studio albums.

Comparing it to the previous albums, you could be forgiven for thinking that Julian Temple’s vocal style is transitioning away from the smoother melodic vocals present in Upsidedownbackwards, with Antarctica’s opening track Hundred Year Storm showcasing the rough abrasive side of Temple’s vocals. This display of the West Coast Blues tongue that could be described as ‘John Mayer meets Joe Cocker’ is not representative of the album as a whole. While Temple’s style does involve many a grunt and gravelly vocal riff, he still predominantly uses the softer melodies and harmonies.

Antarctica is the first album, with the Julian Temple Band’s most current six-piece line-up, adding keyboardist Logan Hampton, bassist Steve 'Seedy' Marshall, and electric guitarist Richard Ley-Hamilton to the mix, adding further layers, textures, and instrumental combinations. Most notable is Hampton’s additions with some great looping pieces on the keys.

Antarctica has fewer tracks than its predecessor Ceiling In The Sky but has a longer average track length. It will be interesting to see whether this is trend continues as they experiment with longer song structures with varied sectional arrangements.

This release puts forward an intriguing mix of sounds. Vocally adventurous, with a wide array of instrumentation, exacerbated by the abilities of the keys, the focal point of the music varies from track to track; keys and drums are predominant on Recurrent, whereas Across The Valley obviously focuses on the funky guitar riffs, with some supplementary violin. The one thing that remains consistent throughout the album, is Julian Temple’s vocals, which strings together these otherwise widely differing songs. I would love to see more songs like closing track Satellite, which has the vocals toned down slightly, as the Temple’s volume does create a disconnect in many of the other songs, distracting from the soundscapes that have clearly been painstakingly arranged.

Often with a free-flowing, positive ambience, Antarctica feels like the soundtrack to someone’s spiritual journey, or vision quest, if you will; travelling through various near-alien environments, in various forms, feeling a range of emotions.

Without being able to pin down an exact category that this album fits, it’s very difficult to gauge the album. However, in the same way an unsure student picks their classes, Antarctica isn’t specialising in a niche, it spreads a wide net offering a little bit of everything, providing something to appeal to a number of moods and emotional states. 


Review written by Alex Moulton

 

About Julian Temple Band

Singer-songwriter Julian Temple was born into a diverse family of working musicians, with his mother, a dixie-land jazz pianist, and his father a classical lute player, giving him his first musical inspirations. Earliest memories include playing with toys and singing under his mother's antique grand piano as she vamped away to her original sheet music by the likes of Irving Berlin, Jelly Roll Morton, Rudy Vallee, Al Jolson and all the ragtime greats. The youngest of three, Temple taught himself the guitar at the age of 12 and immediately started writing his own material.

Fast forward to 2004 and Julian Temple Band formed in Dunedin by a group of keen music students attending the University of Otago. A far cry from dixie-land, the band employs a wide variety of contemporary musical styles including blues, jazz and rock and roll to communicate their curious vignettes on life, love, loss, addiction, environmentalism, and mental health. With an innate desire to share their love for music and "induce the jamboree", Julian Temple Band are known for their extreme touring habits and energetic live performances. Members include jazz and experimental drummer Paul McLennan-Kissel (Entire Alphabet, Onsombil), funk-rock-reggae bassist Steve 'Seedy' Marshall (Left Or Right), Doors-esque keyboardist Logan Hampton (Alizarin Lizard), classical and avant-garde violinist Alex Vaatstra (Ha The Unclear, Grawlixes, Matt Langley), indie electric guitarist Richard Ley-Hamilton (Males, Asta Rangu) and singer-songwriter-guitarist Julian Temple.

JTB have independently released six albums; In Sea (2006), Quiet Earth (2009), Balance Escapes (2010), Upsidedownbackwards (2012), Ceiling In The Sky (2015), and Antarctica (2018) and toured extensively through the U.S.A., Australia and New Zealand.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Julian Temple Band

Releases

Upsidedownbackwards
Year: 2013
Type: Album
Nowhere Fast
Year: 2011
Type: Album
Balance Escapes
Year: 2010
Type: Album
Quiet Earth
Year: 2009
Type: Album
In Sea
Year: 2006
Type: Album

Other Reviews By butch181

Gig Review: Sevendust w/ City of Souls @ Powerstation, Auckland - 23/04/2019
24 Apr 2019 // by butch181
A decidedly reserved Tuesday night in Auckland and people were quietly piling into the Powerstation and grabbing some drinks at the bar. The upper balcony area was closed, so the fans were amassing downstairs around the inner perimeter of the venue.
Read More...
Sonic Altar - Album Review: Under A Dying Sun
27 Mar 2019 // by butch181
In this digital age, it’s not often that you get a full length record anymore. Everything is short and sweet just to get content out there before fans forget your band even exists.
Read More...
Levi Sesega - Single Review: Mirror Man
17 Mar 2019 // by butch181
Levi is a musical amalgamation that would in most cases be categorised as folk, thanks to the groups' uncommon mix of instruments consisting of a saxophone, cello, and cajón, and a lack of a drum kit or electric instruments. That being said, Mirror Man has something unique.
Read More...
The Gemini Effect - Single Review: Little Mouse
17 Mar 2019 // by butch181
Little Mouse is the first single from Bad Alien, the upcoming sophomore album of three-piece alt-rock act The Gemini Effect. With some nice consistent snare work, the track jumps right off the bat with a great organic sense of rhythm that has you bobbing your head and tapping your foot along with the beat, accentuated by some gritty power chords.
Read More...
Mermaidens - Single Review: You Maintain The Stain
17 Mar 2019 // by butch181
The latest release from Wellington trio Mermaidens is a straight up middle finger to the powers that control the world and throws away the mainstream formula of verse/chorus patterns, instead, forming a self-righteous maelstrom of sonic environments.  With no warning given, You Maintain The Stain gets straight into cold, apathetic vocals alongside a pluggy bassline, until the guitar jumps in with an uncomfortable level of discord that sows the seeds of uneasiness in the pit of your stomach as if every instrument is performing a different song.
Read More...
Paper Cranes - Album Review: Voices
19 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Due for release January 18, 2019, Voices is the second full-length album from Indie Folk duo Paper Cranes. While comprised of ten tracks, the album has a short overall runtime of just over 35 minutes.
Read More...
This Pale Fire - Single Review: Float Out
17 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Float Out is about the process of letting things go, moving forward, learning from your past experiences, growing as a result. As such, the track has an intrinsically emotional weight to it.
Read More...
EP Review: Miller Yule Live
17 Dec 2018 // by butch181
Miller Yule Live is a good length EP, consisting of seven tracks with a total runtime of over 30 minutes. Performing a setlist that is mostly sourced from his 2016 EP Shoot Me In The Heart (reviewed here), Miller Yule has also added in his single Diamonds (released in November 2017 and reviewed here), a stripped down adaptation of Six60's Don't Give It Up, and a new track to spice it up further.
Read More...
View All Articles By butch181

NZ Top 10 Singles

  • OLD TOWN ROAD (REMIX)
    Lil Nas X feat. Billy Ray Cyrus
  • I DON'T CARE
    Ed Sheeran And Justin Bieber
  • BAD GUY
    Billie Eilish
  • SOMEONE YOU LOVED
    Lewis Capaldi
  • TRUTH HURTS
    Lizzo
  • CROSS ME
    Ed Sheeran feat. Chance The Rapper And PnB Rock
  • IF I CAN'T HAVE YOU
    Shawn Mendes
  • THE LONDON
    Young Thug feat. J. Cole And Travis Scott
  • TALK
    Khalid And Disclosure
  • 3 NIGHTS
    Dominic Fike
View the Full NZ Top 40...
muzic.net.nz Logo
100% New Zealand Music
All content on this website is copyright to muzic.net.nz and other respective rights holders. Redistribution of any material presented here without permission is prohibited.
Report a ProblemReport A Problem