YIR MAG

The Trouble With Templeton
by Cam Johns for yirmag.com

Ok, I am now sold. After listening and living with The Trouble With Templeton’s Rookie for a while now I think I finally got it. This realisation did not come easy however, with countless stop start listens, the record on the whole felt adequate but it was just not resonating with me as much I would have liked. You could say I was having “trouble”… You could also say that quote unquote “jokes” are something I should never attempt.

It may have been the amount of love I had seen for this record that in some way scared me off, so when the chance came to make a trip to the Northcote Social Club to see them live, I needed to attend. As I have mentioned before hearing a band perform their songs live often brings another dimension to their work, allowing a different perspective to the songs and the band in general. After subjecting my body, mind and soul (but really, mostly my ears) to this record the week leading up to the 16th of August, I do believe I was more than prepared and ready for this experience.

After picking up my now regular partner on my musical journeys, my girlfriend Courtney, we started our trek towards Northcote. On a very blustery and miserable Melbourne night and not wanting to listen to the game of football that was already over, a final go around of ‘Rookie’ was decided upon. I was very excited because Courtney had never been to this particular venue. A venue that is one of my favourites for live music, with many of my most memorable live music moments happening right at the Northcote Social Club. From being one of 10 or so people in a very empty Magic Kids gig that’s saw the front man roam the very empty floor space, to a Tiny Ruins gig that saw every attendee sit cross legged on the floor as soon as she appeared on stage, to the 3 straight nights I attended last year, I just love the intimacy and feel of the whole room. I think it would be safe to say my love for the venue had me in high spirits already.

After telling Courtney all about these stories multiple times while gushing about my love for NSC, we had arrived and walking in I was surprised at the turn out. And it then occurred to me that I had in fact missed most of the supporting acts. Missing Willow Darling completely and much to my dismay half of Ali Barter’s set. Which I was really gutted about because Ali has the type of vocal style I really fall head over heels for, where she is singing over her breath which really adds weight to all her songs. I really recommend heading over to her pozible page and helping fund her new album, I know I already have.

Check out her E.P here:
Trip - EP by Ali Barter

And check out her pozible page here and help in anyway you can: http://www.pozible.com/project/27173/157415

When Ali left the stage and the crowd moved slightly, we pounced at the opportunity and firmly entrenched ourselves right at the front of the stage. After all the instruments and everything was set up the Brisbane 5 piece came out on stage. What really struck me was how young they really were which really contrasted with how mature they sound on Rookie, youthful but very mature. With Hugh Middleton on electric guitar, Betty Yeowart on keys, Sam Pankhurst on bass, Ritchie Daniell on drums and of course frontman and guitarist Thomas Calder filling up the stage nicely. Anticipation had hit me and from the first track I was all in. To be honest with you I don’t quite remember what song it was, with my focus and undivided attention locked on the three closest members facial expressions. When I get this close at a gig I am always interested in musicians “Music Face”. Sam had his eyes closed, lips pinched together and head swaying along to his bass line. Ritchie was mouth beat boxing along to his drum work perfectly and Thomas was doing the thing I really love to see from a lead singer, and that is close his eyes while singing. In my opinion it shows feeling and a real connection to his music. Unfortunately because I was so close to the right of the stage I did not get to observe Betty or Hugh’s music face and I do apologise for that.

Creepy face watching aside, the tightness that TTWT exude is a real testament to them all as performers considering they have only been together over a year. From the very OK Computer inspired ‘Whimpering Child’ to the acoustic lead and keyboard laden ‘Six Months In A Cast’ every track sounding even better in a live setting… then came the only track on ‘Rookie’ I was hesitant on hearing. ‘Like A Kid’ was a track that from first listen just rubbed me the wrong way. The main reason being, in my brain anyway, its insane similarity to the 2003/2004 hit ‘In The Shadows’ by The Rasmus. And thankfully hearing it live improved it ten fold. Possibly seeing others enjoy it around me helped or perhaps the slight echo on the vocals benefited from the space in the room, it just felt less confined and allowed to breathe. Around this time Thomas admitted to having a cold and apologised for anything that sounded shit and the evidence was shown on his understandably sweaty brow but vocally you could not even tell.

Then something strange happened. Some sections of the crowd started to intermittently chat to each other and the inescapable incoherent chatter was rather drowning. Bad timing had it that the loudest of the talk started during ‘Secret Pastures’, a beautiful acoustic guitar and soft vocal track that I felt didn’t get the right amount of respect from the crowd. A few of the more vocal respectful patrons tried to get them to, for lack of a better phrase, “shut the fuck up”. This did not seem deter Thomas at all though and despite the distractions he didn’t let them in. I was in awe of his vocal ability, which could have been underpar considering the illness he was battling, and I seriously think he has one of the strongest voices in all of indie rock/pop right now. I implore people to absolutely catch them live.

Every one of the tracks on Rookie plays to this bands strengths, Thomas’ vocal capabilities and the extremely catchy choruses on every single one of these songs. Their ear for melody makes them so easy to like, which is evident from the popularity with the general public and critics alike. With a record as polished as this and a live show that should surely only improve, I have no doubt that this is only the start of a long fruitful career.

Tracks to get behind: Whimpering Child, Six Months In A Cast, I Recorded You, Secret Pastures, Glue, You Are New

Rookie is out now via their website here: http://thetroublewithtempleton.com/buy/

Watch the music videos for ‘Six Months In A Cast’, ‘You Are New’ and ‘Like A Kid’ here:

Six Months in A Cast

You Are New

Like A Kid

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Misha Grace | Artist

"Misha Grace is my human name and boy dog is my ghost name. I paint lots of pictures and I make lots of videos. I project live visuals with Friendships at shows but sometime it’s hard because of the epilepszz in my brain. I like to make things that make your brain work and which sometimes hurts your brain because it doesn’t make sense. I like to breed art… no  wait, I try to make art breed like they do with pandas. Music is beautiful and paintings are too. I’m confused a lot of the time because I have a learning disorder but I think that’s kind of funny. Come hang with me because I like company.”

The visual fuckery of Misha Grace is an explosion of colour, sound and imagery, driven by a passion to push viewer’s imaginations to the next level. It’s hard to encapsulate the emotive strength of Misha’s work without selling it short. Misha’s ability to create completely unique reactions from viewer to viewer perhaps offers a better explanation of the seemingly effortless complexity of her work.  Our Creative director Diarmaid Murray describes her work as “The right kind of weird.” –Something we too at Youth in Revolt strive to embody. This is why we have chosen Misha Grace as our pick for our first film post. Get comfortable and enjoy the other-worldly visual fuckery of Misha Grace by following this link: http://yirmag.com/2013/05/07/misha-grace-artist/

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Mell Hall | Writer

To simply say Mell Hall is a writer would be selling her short. Although words are her first love this extremely talented and versatile writer has also made a name for herself as a stylist, brand consultant, publicist and more recently a DJ. With an ever growing list of accomplishments under her belt, perhaps a more appropriate description would be a young successful entrepreneur who has attained that ever so elusive and sought after goal of making a living from doing what she loves.

When I sat down to have coffee with Mell at my local coffee shop I presented her with my ideas for this piece “You’re too kind.” She laughs modestly about being referred to as a ‘young successful entrepreneur’, but credit should be giving where credit is due, and Mell Hall has more than earned the title. Rarely ever caught without a pen in hand, laptop present or more recently headphones on, Mell Hall is constantly working on some type of creative project. Heavily inspired by the people she surrounds herself with whom she admires greatly, she speaks fondly of the creative’s she shares residency with at her beloved Villa. “The Villa is my home, my bane. It’s filled with a range of creatives doing their thing.” When I ask her about what it’s like to live a double life as a writer by day and the other half of all female DJ act Kolors by night Mell explains it involves a lot of Red Bull, all nighters, bronzer and lipstick “it’s a girl’s best friend when trying to look awake.” She also speaks warmly about her partner in crime behind the decks, Jess Hatzis’, and what it’s like working together to provide party-goers with the perfect disco. “We know exactly what the other is thinking, and therefore our sets are compatible. She never seises to amaze me.”

As discussion moves back to her writing we find ourselves swapping stories about the first time we both felt the written word’s relentless gravitational pull.“I knew I wanted to be a writer when my year ten English teacher was bought to tears by my modern portrayal of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet with a little help from Nick Cave.” She tells me “That night I went straight home and told my Mum I wanted to be a writer.” If didn’t show at the time, I was impressed. As she politely listens to me waffle on about why I decided to become a writer we find that we both originally planned to enter the work force as nurses, It’s then, that it becomes apparent to me that Mell is one of those rare people that you can both find common ground with but also look up to and aspire to be like one day.

We speak for what seems like a short amount of time more, but is in actual fact is another  hour about her various projects, goals, dreams and boys (an unavoidable subject when two females sit down over coffee it seems) and I can’t help but wonder where does it stop? Well not here apparently, as Mell gears up to take on her newest creative venture a long side long time friend James Fava. Fall Street Records , a word play on the duos combined names is a fresh new music label that they’ve both dreamed of starting together for years, and is now finally becoming a reality. With DJ Yasumo and infectious indie rock band I Know the Chief already signed up, things are looking extremely promising.

Finally we say our goodbyes, Mell undoubtedly keen to get back to it, but before we do I ask her one last question, what piece of advice would she give to a young creative trying to make in the today’s ever changing industry?  “Figure out what you want to do and stay true to that, write down your thoughts day and night, and always, always ask questions.”
Words by Nicole Wilson ©
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