Raunchy, strident with sensuality seeping through the growls, Julian Temple’s vocals shine against a backdrop of emotional storms, confusion, wonder and various kinds of terrain. ‘Antarctica’ is (impressively) the sixth album from the Dunedin-based Julian Temple Band, and it has an abundance of energy.
On this outing, the expanded band includes guitarist/vocalist Julian Temple, Alex Vaatstra on violin, Logan Hampton playing keys, Steve Marshall on bass and vox, drummer Paul McLennan-Kissel and Richard Ley-Hamilton on guitar. Recorded by Tom Bell at Chicks Hotel in Dunedin, it was mixed by McLennan-Kissel with mastering also completed by Bell.
Led along with fast-paced melodies the music is skillfully layered with harmonic textures, quirky and mysterious with a plethora of ideas blowing about between the harmonies.
There is a great versatility to the musical ground, while still maintaining the JTB edge to alternative rock.
The title track is anxiously restrained, peppered with strings and guitar and the ‘…so far, far, far, far away’ chorus refrain. Orient Express winds its way out of town before picking up real pace. Halls Where The Walls is coated in cheekiness and reveals raw edges, whereas the following Recurrent has a softness and emotional honesty attached to the mystery.
The album opener Hundred Year Storm best represents the essence of the band: progressive, musically full and wholesome. The highlight here is the well-layered instrumental sections. Each musician is a talent and an asset, their instruments used cleverly and performed with finesse. Julian Temple Band have once again, delivered a hearty collection of music that is a treat for listeners.