Birmingham 3 piece Templeton Pek return with a fast paced and melodic follow up to 2008’s ‘No Association.’ Fuelled with menacing guitar riffs and addictive vocals, this is an album full of energy and enthusiasm.
‘Scratches and Scars’ explodes with opening track ‘Calculate the Risk’ which sets the tempo for the 45 minute onslaught of unrelenting hardcore to follow. By the time second track ‘Headgames’ kicks in you realise that Templeton Pek have gained the key ingredient that was perhaps missing from their debut album. ‘Key ingredient’ however is a bit of a red herring in that it there is no specific technical additions to the songs in this album. It is more the ability to structure their songs in such a way to keep audience interested and heads banging. This is definitely an album that sounds better when cranked up to 11.
The band’s time on the road has clearly benefited them. Touring with such scene heavy weights as Taking Back Sunday, Rise Against, and Story of the Year will obviously do your credibility and fan base no harm. In addition there is an air of confidence and swagger throughout the album, this is a band who are moving in the right direction and they know it.
Templeton Pek are currently making their first serious assault on the UK pop single chart with ‘30 Seconds Too Far’ – a charity single in aid of The Teenage Cancer Trust (released 31 January) and at only 30 seconds long aims to chart as the shortest ever single.
‘Scratches and Scars’ is by no means a flawless album, it does stumble momentarily mid way through. The riffs aren’t quite as inspired and a couple of songs feel a little laboured. This is but a minor glitch and by the time ‘Dark Matter’ comes along we are right back on track.
Personally I feel the album suffers from a lack of variance. It is essentially twelve reasonably similar songs at a similar tempo with a similar structure. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, especially when your songs are cut from the same well crafted template but a bit more diversity wouldn’t go a-miss.
Although they aren’t exactly breaking musical boundaries with this album it is catchy guitar laden hardcore at its near best. It’s endearing and enjoyable and 2011 could be a good year forTempleton Pek.
(Released through Small Town Records on 21 February 2011)