THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT-WHITE BEAR.
THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT-WHITE BEAR.
Hardly a month goes by without another band being touted as the future of rock ’n’ roll. These bands are hailed as the next Led Zeppelin or Rolling Stones. Often though, these bands have sunk like a musical Titanic. However, in September 2013, the future of rock ’n’ roll strutted into the spotlight, when The Temperance Movement released their critically acclaimed eponymous debut album.
The Temperance Movement showcased an old fashioned rock ’n’ roll band at their swaggering best. Seamlessly, The Temperance Movement fused blistering, old-school rock ‘n’ roll with blues and country. This was a heady and potent brew from a truly versatile group.
They were equally comfortable delivering ballads, as they were kicking loose on raucous rockers. When they did, The Temperance Movement exuded attitude and confidence on what was a flawless debut album. Critics went into overdrive, calling The Temperance Movement rock ’n’ roll’s rising stars. I went further and said: “the future of rock ‘n’ roll is The Temperance Movement. Many people agreed.
Soon, The Temperance Movement was climbing the UK charts. Eventually, it reached number twelve. For a debut album, especially one from a band that had only been formed two years earlier, this was regarded as a huge success. The months spent touring The Temperance Movement had been well spent. Now it was a case of doing it all again.
Just over two years later, and The Temperance Movement make a triumphant return with their sophomore album, White Bear. It was released on Earache Records on 15th January 2016. Soon, White Bear was racing up the UK rock charts, and nine days later, reached number one on 24th January 2016. No longer were The Temperance Movement just rising stars of the British music scene. Instead, they were one of the most exciting British bands of recent years. However, a lot of hard work had gone into getting The Temperance Movement to where they were.
It was 2011, that The Temperance Movement story began. That’s when five veterans of the music industry decided to form a band.
By then, Glasgow born lead vocalist Phil Campbell had already released a string of solo albums, including 2008s After The Garden, 2009s Daddy’s Table and 2010s Saviour’s Song. Bassist Nick Fyffe had been in Jamiroquai’s band; while Australian-born drummer Damon Wilson counted Feeder, The Waterboy’s and Ray Davies as former employers. This left just the two guitarists Paul Sayer and Luke Potashnick. Just like other members of The Temperance Movement, Luke was had played in several bands. Among them, were Rooster and Ben’s Brother. These five experienced and talented musicians joined forces to form The Temperance Movement.
Between 2011 and September 2012, The Temperance Movement concentrated on honing their sound. Quickly, they’d established a loyal following. Whether it was pubs, clubs, concert halls or festivals, the word was out. The Temperance Movement were seen as a group with a huge future. Already, some critics were referring to The Temperance Movement as the future of rock ‘n’ roll. Despite the rave reviews, The Temperance Movement weren’t signed to a record label
So when the time came to release their debut E.P, The Temperance Movement released it themselves. The Pride E.P. was released on 10th September 2012 and featured five tracks. Pride, No Lucky, Only Friend, Ain’t No Telling and Lovers and Fighters were an introduction to The Temperance Movement’s kick ass brand of blistering rock ‘n’ roll. Pride was released to critical acclaim, and lead to The Temperance Movement playing at The Sunflower Jam Super Jam at the Royal Albert Hall.
Every year, The Sunflower Jam Super Jam takes place at the Royal Albert Hall. This charity concert raises funds for The Sunflower Jam, a cancer charity. In September 2012, just a week after the release of the Pride E.P, The Temperance Movement were the opening act at the Super Jam. They played the first two tracks from the Pride E.P. The Temperance Movement were going places.
Two months later, in November 2012, The Temperance Movement were asked to play at Futurerock in the 100 Club, in Oxford Street, London. This was another prestigious venue, where the great and good of rock ’n’ roll had once played. Usually later in the career. The Temperance Movement it seemed were overachievers, playing such a prestigious venue early in their career. 2012 had been a good year for The Temperance Movement. However, 2013 would be even better.
During 2013, The Temperance Movement didn’t stop working. In April and May, they headed out on a gruelling British tour. Then during the summer, they became festival favourites. It was just as well that in between, tours and festivals, The Temperance Movement managed to find time to record their eponymous debut album.
The Temperance Movement was released to widespread critical acclaim on 16th September 2013. Soon, it began to climb the UK charts, and eventually reached number twelve. For a band that had only been formed two years previously, this was an incredible feat. Despite this, The Temperance Movement weren’t going to rest on their laurels.
They continued to tour during the first few months of 2014. Then on 10th June 2014, The Temperance Movement found themselves at the Waldbühne in Berlin. They were due to warm up for one of the biggest names in music, the Rolling Stones. This was almost ironic, as The Temperance Movement had the same swagger and attitude as the Rolling Stones once had. Maybe that’s why six days later The Temperance Movement were reunited with the Rolling Stones.
This time, it was in Vienna, at the Vienna Ernst Happel Stadion. On 16th June 2014 The Temperance Movement took to the stage. Soon their swaggering brand of good time rock ’n’ roll was winning over the audience. Wherever they went on what seemed like a never-ending tour, The Temperance Movement won new friends and influenced people. However, there were still people who hadn’t The Temperance Movement. They had a cunning plan.
So on 6th October 2014, The Temperance Movement was reissued as a double album. The second disc featured five live tracks from a concert in Portsmouth, England. They were chosen by the band, and allowed those that hadn’t yet heard the band live, to hear what they were missing. This should keep The Temperance Movement’s fans happy until they recorded their sophomore album. That was still to come.
2015 started well for The Temperance Movement. In January, came the announcement on Planet Rock Radio that The Temperance Movement were due to feature at the prestigious Planet Rockstock in Marrakech. This wasn’t until June.
By then, The Temperance Movement were continuing what was a gruelling live schedule. They seemed to live on the road. However, this would eventually take its toll on a band member.
In September 2015, The Temperance Movement made an announcement just prior to their appearance at the Ullapool Festival. Founding member and guitarist Luke Potashnick had left the band. “Luke has being playing and touring internationally for many years, but he has always preferred the studio to the stage. As long as TTM have been together, Luke has quietly enjoyed a writer/producer career of his own which he now wishes to fully dedicate himself to.” For many, this came as a shock.
Those that had followed The Temperance Movement’s career, were aware that Luke Potashnick wanted to forge a career as a songwriter and producer. This wasn’t possible when he was part of a band who spent large parts of the year touring. Something had to change. So Luke Potashnick left The Temperance Movement.
Replacing Luke Potashnick for The Temperance Movement’s gig at the Ullapool Festival was guitarist Jacob Hildebrand. At the time, it was unclear whether he was a just a temporary or permanent member of The Temperance Movement?
It turned out, that Jacob Hildebrand had only a walk-on part in The Temperance Movement story. Matt White was brought onboard and became The Temperance Movement’s new guitarist. He would feature on White Bear, The Temperance Movement’s sophomore album.
For White Bear producer Sam Miller was drafted in. He worked with The Temperance Movement in three studios in London, Northamptonshire and Monmouthshire. The Temperance Movement had written eleven songs. These songs marked the debut of The Temperance Movement’s latest lineup.
Joining Phil Campbell, the voice of The Temperance Movementm was the rhythm section of bassist Nick Fyffe, drummer and guitarists Paul Sayer. They were augmented by the band’s newest recruit Matt White. Quickly, the shops took shape, and by the end of 2015, The Temperance Movement were ready to unleash the White Bear.
On the 15th January 2016, The Temperance Movement’s sophomore album White Bear was released to overwhelming critical acclaim. Soon, it racing up the UK rock charts, and reached number one on 24th January 2016. The Temperance Movement “the future of rock ’n’ roll” were back.
Three Bulleits opens White Bear. The song takes its title from a brand of bourbon, which apparently is a favourite of some members of The Temperance Movement. Guitars shriek, drums pound and the bass bounds. Together, they provide a backdrop for Phil’s lived-in, and bourbon honed vocal. Behind, him searing, machine gun guitars and a buzzing bass combine. By then, The Temperance Movement are heading into anthem territory. Crucial to this anthem are sing song harmonies, reminiscent of The Faces. They’re augmented by screaming and blistering blues guitars. There’s even nod to the Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin on this anthemic, swaggering start to White Bear. Time for Three Bulleits I think?
From the opening bars, Get Yourself Free has good time rock ’n’ roll written all over. A chiming, chirping guitar guitar sits above the rhythm section. They lock into a tight groove, the bass buzzing, drums rumbling and guitar chiming. Phil’s vocal is soulful and impassioned, before The Temperance Movement kick loose at forty-five seconds. By then, Phil’s vocal is a mixture of raw power and passion, while the rest of the band draw inspiration from The Black Crowes, The Faces and Led Zeppelin. Meanwhile the twin guitar sear, scream and soar above the arrangement. It’s driven along by the powerhouse of a rhythm section. Adding the finishing touch are the harmonies. They’re the perfect foil to Phil’s pleas “Get Yourself Free” on what’s a fist-pumping rocky opus.
Just the bass and crystalline guitar combine on A Pleasant Peace I Feel. Soon, they’re joined drums and braying saxophone. They set the scene for Phil’s needy vocal, on what’s an underrated arrangement. At any moment, it could explode, and The Temperance Movement rock out. It takes to 1.43 and the scorching guitars join the powerhouse of a rhythm section. The drums pay homage to Keith Moon, while Phil’s vocal has a classic rock influence. Then when the chorus kicks in, euphoric and exhilarating describes this joyous, hook-laden rocky anthem. Soon, it’s heading towards a glorious rocky crescendo. By then, it’s obvious that A Pleasant Peace I Feel is sure to be a festival favourite during 2016.
Bursts of machine gun guitar and pounding drums combine on Modern Massacre, and create a backdrop for Phil’s gravelly vocal. He sounds as if he’s survived on the traditional rock ’n’ roll diet of whisky, beer and Marlboro. If he has, this has served him well. His vocal is tailor made for the song. The rest of band unleash one of their heaviest songs. Phil struts and swaggers his way through the lyrics. Meanwhile drums pound relentlessly, guitars scream as The Temperance Movement cut loose, before reaching a dramatic, rocky crescendo.
A lone guitar is panned right on Battle Lines, while Phil’s vocal is panned left. Dramatic drums and a hesitant buzzing bass take centre-stage. That’s until The Temperance Movement kick loose. When they do, they sound like an early seventies classic rock group. It seems real rock is alive and kicking. Especially with scorching, blistering guitars and the pounding rhythm section locking horns. Later, the sing song harmonies and guitars laden with effects are added to what’s a musical masterclass from The Temperance Movement.
Phil howls a warning, as The Temperance Movement unleash the White Bear. Its arrangement is a wall of sound. This comes courtesy of the searing guitars and stomping rhythm section. Then the arrangement becomes understated, allowing Phil to deliver a tender vocal. Soon, though, The Temperance Movement up the tempo and the wall of sound reappears. Phil’s vocal is a mixture of power and passion. Later, as the tempo drops, country-tinged guitars accompany Phil as the arrangement becomes melodic and wistful. That’s until the powerhouse of the arrangement returns. Guitars scream, threaten to feedback, while cooing harmonies and the thunderous rhythm section accompany Phil’s heartfelt, impassioned vocal. Emotion and power combine, before the arrangement dissipates, as if The Temperance Movement are spent. No wonder after four minutes of musical magic.
Oh Lorraine was released as the lead single from White Bear. It’s the perfect choice for a single. It’s a hook-laden anthem. Driven along by the twin guitars and rhythm section, harmonies accompany Phil’s rocky vocal. When his vocal drops out, the rest of the band take centre-stage, and showcase their considerable talents, combining rock and boogie on this irresistible, hook-laden single.
Stylistically, the introduction to Magnify is quite different from previous tracks. There’s a more experimental sound with crystalline guitars, a moody rumbling bass and futuristic effects combining. This is what frames Phil’s heartfelt, hopeful vocal as he sings: “you take your time and I’ll be there.” Soon, though, The Temperance Movement have kicked loose, and are showcasing their good time rock ’n’ roll sound. The Faces, Rolling Stones, Black Crowes and Primal Scream seem to have influenced The Temperance Movement as they strut their way through what’s become a delicious slice of good time rock ’n’ roll.
As The Sun And Moon Roll Around Too Soon begins to unfold, there’s more than a nod to Led Zeppelin. That’s the case from the stripped down introduction, where guitars accompany Phil’s vocal. Then when The Temperance Movement revisit their trademark hard rocking sound, they pay homage to Jimmy Page and Co. From there, The Temperance Movement strut their way through the arrangement where crunchy guitars and mesmeric rhythm section combine with harmonies. They play a part in this hook heavy track. It features The Temperance Movement at their very best, and is sure to be another crowd pleaser.
Closing White Bear, is the ballad I Hope I’m Not Losing My Mind. A guitar rings out, before drums play slowly and deliberately. They’re the perfect backdrop for Phil’s soul-baring vocal. It’s akin to to a confessional as he sings: “I Hope I’m Not Losing My Mind.” Accompanied by harmonies, a beautiful, poignant balls unfolds, where country, soul and rock combine seamlessly, and shows another side to Temperance Movement. It seems they’ve kept the best until last. That’s saying something, given the quality of music on White Bear.
From the opening bars of Three Bulleits, right through to the closing notes of I Hope I’m Not Losing My Mind, White Bear is a near flawless album. It seems that The Temperance Movement haven’t suffered from second album syndrome. Far from it.
White Bear oozes quality. With its rocky anthems and the soulful ballad I Hope I’m Not Losing My Mind, it’s the perfect followup to The Temperance Movement.
It was never going to be easy to followup an album as good The Temperance Movement, but Phil Campbell and Co. have managed to do so with apparent ease. The band wrote the ten tracks on White Bear, and recorded them in three takes or less. That’s no bad thing.
Nowadays, many albums are too polished. Rock albums should be a bit rough around the edges. Look at some of the greatest albums in the history of rock. They were recorded quickly, with a degree of spontaneity. That’s what The Temperance Movement set out to do, and achieved on White Bear, which was recently released by Earache Records.
It’s no exaggeration to say that White Bear features The Temperance Movement at the peak of their powers. They literally strut and swagger their way through White Bear, creating music that’s anthemic, hook-laden, melodic and nine times out of ten, always rocky and memorable. The Temperance Movement don’t ration hooks, as they follow in the footsteps of The Faces, Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones and Black Crowes on what’s a career changing album, White Bear.
White Bear reached number one on the UK rock charts. It seems that The Temperance Movement are the real, deal and the future of rock ’n’ roll. The Temperance Movement’s sophomore album White Bear showcases an old fashioned rock ’n’ roll band at their swaggering best. Seamlessly, The Temperance Movement fused blistering, old-school rock ‘n’ roll with blues and country on White Bear. This is a heady and potent brew from a truly versatile group, The Temperance Movement.
THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT-WHITE BEAR.