Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Peep Tempel @ The Old Bar...

The Peep Tempel
7th July, 2011.
The Old Bar, Fitzroy.

The Peep Tempel are a well oiled machine. Although opening for the much loved Graveyard Train, receive the praise of a headline act.

As I walked up to the door the punters spilled out onto the foot path. A Facebook update at 8:13pm had said “Sold out. Sorry.” Graveyard Train were playing a three day straight residency at The Old Bar. It was the busiest I have ever seen.

Friends were hugging, toasting drinks and wrapped in scarves trying to keep warm around the bar near the entrance. Everyone looked at each other as new comers walked by in case they knew them, a feeling of friendship and closeness making the room even cosier than its size.

The Peep Tempel kicked off and then the room filled from the sides like a bowl being pushed under water. From the get go the band impress. Up front energy that grabs you and pulls you to the stage.

Blake’s vocals jump from the speakers with an authority and emotional honesty that just can’t be compared. Gazing through the punters heads in front he’s not playing chords he’s throttling his guitars neck, tensing his own and baring his soul.

Steve sits behind his kit like he was born there. From locomotive building beats and short, sharp bursts, he didn’t need to learn to play, it had to learn to tame him. A kit of essentials that keeps the Peep Tempel timing so precise.

Matt's bass keeps the machine moving forward. Adding strength to what was previously a two piece. No over the top pedals to distort the volume and power it adds to complete the trio.

Blake sways side to side and stares at the mic, lowering his voice and holding the room in his hand. The room quietens to a stand still as he taps his guitar gently. All are hypnotised and swaying in return as he sucks in the anticipation in one foul swoop and yells “ARRRRRRRR!” The room explodes!

A broken string. Usually a moment with silence and chattering. Blakes offers up “I’m just going to deal with that while these boys do something special.” The other two kick into Groove Is In The Heart. Blake spontaneously breaks into song about what he’s doing as he untangles two strings.

They’re a three-piece with a stripped back sound with more depth and spirit than a vat of Bourbon. They don’t hide behind effects and walls of sound. They simply throw themselves right at the feet of the punter, all heart and possessed with pure fucking rock’n’roll.

I could only muster enough time to catch these guys and missed Strangers From Now On and Graveyard Train. As I squeezed out through the sold out Old Bar and into the cold of winter, I must’ve been smiling like I had just set up an intricate practical joke. Sometimes I just can’t believe the talent bands possess. More and more I’m finding the bands I listen to are mainly Melbourne’s own and tonight this town was The Peep Tempel’s.

Every week throughout September, the guys will be at The Old Bar for a Wednesday residency. I strongly suggest you get off your couch and take yourself down there. They do not disappoint.

Check out The Peep Tempel's Bandcamp for digital downloads and their 7" releases.

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