||INTERVIEW WITH PHIL CAMPBELL, THE TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT
Liz Medhurst: Photos by Noel Buckey
The Temperance Movement have been making such big waves across the music industry this year that it's a surprise that they don't enter the room on surf boards. After seeing their set at Cambridge Rock Festival it's not hard to see why.
Live, the five piece from London and Glasgow are the epitome of a band who are completely aware of their identity, and along with the relaxation that this brings, they have all the confidence and swagger required. Each band member owns his own space on the stage yet there is the connection and almost telepathy that marks out a true band.
The music belongs firmly in the blues-rock tradition but is observably original, with both a hard edge, and soul-stirring melodies. This band is in an optimum place to be established firmly at the front of the rock and roll scene. MetalTalk caught up with lead singer Phil Campbell backstage to find out more.
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So how's this summer being for you so far, Phil?
PC: "It's been great. Actually I'm not going to lie, it's been the best summer of my life to date. A huge amount of gigging, working really hard, writing, rehearsing – music is now a full-time job which I've wanted for so long and I'm loving every minute."
Words like vibe and chemistry can be overused when it comes to describing bands but you guys really did bring that meaning to life up there.
PC: "I think it's that we're all old enough and wise enough now to be able to have fun. We've been through a lot in the music business and we know what we want to do. I'm really lucky because I have such a secure unit behind me as a singer, I'm in safe hands with the band and can perform at my best, and we do function as a band."
So how long has it taken to get to this stage, how long have you been together?
PC: "For about 18 months now."
Really? It feels like it could have been a lot longer than that.
PC: "We know each other really well with all of the touring. We are together all the time, driving round in the van, setting up, soundchecking and so on, and we probably have about an hour left in the day when we can just chill and have a laugh with each other.
"I suppose that also when you are on stage and communicating with each other, that's your very own space that no-one can touch, even though there are a lot of people out there in the audience..."
PC: "I've never thought of it like that but I suppose so!"
Well whatever it is, everything that you have done up to now is clearly working, as your live set is very special indeed. So with the album due in September what's the next 12 months got in store?
PC: "More touring for a start! We've got a lot of gigs planned for the autumn, there will be two UK legs and we'll also be going to Europe in October. I can't remember the exact dates but we will advertise them on the website. As for the next year, we're hoping for success – lots of album sales, secure our place and yes, reap the rewards including making some money."
That will be well deserved. What about the songs, are you the main songwriter?
PC: "No not at all, it is a band effort. I do most of the lyrics, and sometimes the band give me a song without lyrics for me to write over – a bit like Morrissey there – and at other times we jam and songs come out of that. We do organise things and make final decisions as a band."
What are your influences?
PC: "So many of course, but we want to follow in the footsteps of the great bands like The Band, The Beatles, The Stones – who were better at being a band than The Beatles, The Faces and so on. Everyone brings their own influences and styles to the band – Paul and Luke like Free and all the classic 70s rock, Damon brings the hard-core, hard rock element and Nick adds the funk, a dash of Jamiroquai and the like. It's a great mix."
I agree. Will all of the extra activity around the tour and album help or hinder the songwriting and development?
PC: "I think it will be different, and possibly even difficult, but we will do it no matter what. I know and appreciate what needs to be done and I'm not going to stop working at it. We are having such a good time and we will keep going as long as we can."
Ain't No Telling
Know For Sure
Lovers and Fighters
Take It Back
The self-titled debut album is released in the UK on September 16th on Earache Records.