6 September 2016
Temple Avenue - Temple Avenue EP
Temple Avenue are a band who are based in the North East of England, formed out of the ashes of Alter the Republic and consist of Craig Brown on vocals/guitar, Martin Hudson on bass and Dom Aitkenhead on vocals/drums. They have been playing together since 2013 and their influences on their Facebook page are listed as Nirvana, 3 Colours Red and The Smashing Pumpkins. Those are three bands which are all loved on this blog, so the interest as they say, is already perked. They have been playing all around the North East recently, it has been my aim to see them and I keep missing them due to my own bad luck. However, I have been given this EP to review which was released in 2015. I love the image of an astronaut on a horse who is in an abandoned factory, covered in arrows; it just speaks to me like a Banksy art work has done in the past, so let us see how the music has turned out......
Starting off the EP is "Nowhere to Be" and the alternative punk/grunge tags are spot on. Sounding like a cross between the Almighty and 3 Colours Red, with a dash of Smashing Pumpkins, this sound has a hard rock quality to it which has been missing from rock music for a while. It is a song about a relationship that is one-sided and it is fair to say that the ending of this tale is not going to be pleasant. It is a great little opening to the EP, full of energy, bile and attitude. Next is "Black Box" which keeps up that punk rock/grunge attitude with a tale about feeling like everything is going to be lost once everything is over. It is another powerful number, a punk rock number that relies on the quite/loud dynamic and has a strong set of lyrics. It is a brilliant number that sounds as if it is a lost classic from a different era. The penultimate song of the EP is called "Disappeared" which takes things down ever so slightly, but not too much as it still has a massive riff/bass combination that is driven home by the drums that make this song the stand out track of the EP for me. It is a stomping number that has a clear identity, a nod to the past in some ways due to style; but it is as strong as any songs I have heard from some major artists. I like this one a lot, song of the EP for me. Ending the EP is "Cela Dor" which you can download from their Bandcamp page on a name your own price deal 'here' (this is correct at the time of writing). It is the ballad of the EP, a love song about being entranced by a partner and feeling a little bit of hope & trepidation for what is to come, yet still willing to give them everything you are. It is actually the best song to end the EP (which strangely has each song being longer than the previous for some reason), it guides the listener down and it has a brilliant ending which makes me smile due to the uplifting riff, the vocal harmony at the very end and the great music that carries you home.
You know, sometimes this blog gets pigeonholed as a strange noise blog and that is fine. We do love our noise, our rap, our trash and our strange electronica. But sometimes we are very traditional in our tastes, not conservative but we like something that is not too out there; for every Waheela record, we need a Wildhearts release, for every Autoheart, we need a Depeche Mode, for every Meshuggah record, you need an album such as 'Temple of The Dog' to calm the soul. The Temple Avenue EP is the sort of release that we love to hear, it does not set out to reinvent the wheel, it has no great agenda other than being a really good alternative rock/punk/grunge release and it achieves that aim and then some more bonus points as well. They have since released another single which I will be looking into very shortly (and hopefully catching one of their gigs), until that time all I can do is recommend that you check them out.
4.5 out of five - This is really good, well worth checking out
Top track - Disappeared
You can purchase the Temple Avenue EP on Amazon here.
You can visit the Temple Avenue website here.
You can follow the activities of Temple Avenue on Facebook here.
You can stream Temple Avenue EP on Spotify here.
You can stream Temple Avenue EP on Deezer here.
At the time of writing, Temple Avenue EP is not available on Tidal.
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