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Don't Act Like You Don't Care

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Album Review

Four years after his previous solo album Snowbeast, and following back-to-back albums fronting Here We Go Magic, Luke Temple released 2011's lo-fi Don't Act Like You Don't Care. With less ambience and fewer electronic instruments, his solo return is a long step away from his band's works, with intimate lyrics and simpler tunes underscoring a return to singer/songwriter styling. However, the distinction between Temple the solo artist and Temple the bandleader breaks down more than a little, since HWGM's debut is essentially a solo record, and the band's guitarist, Michael Bloch, plays on Don't Act. To further blur the dividing line, Temple wrote and recorded this album at the same time as HWGM's 2009 debut, but its release was delayed due to the band's success. Temple keeps the projects distinct, though, and there's slim chance of confusing one moniker with the other upon listening. Don't Act is also a step away from Snowbeast's experimentalism and free-form song structures, leaning toward more traditional pop forms. Actually, the album was originally referred to as "The Country Record" –- which is a bit misleading, unless it was intended as an indie "art-country" project which, come to think of it, is probably an oxymoron. The record kicks off with the uptempo and bright "In the Open" and "More Than Muscle," both with full-band accompaniment. Mid-album, the Simon & Garfunkel-y "Ophelia" is still toe-tapping and catchy, marked by accordion and guitar twang. Temple then slows up, strips down instrumentation, and never turns back. The final four tracks, all ballads, including "Ballad for Dick George" and the wistful "So Long, So Long" ("Sitting with these pictures that I made of you/Long legs and me/No smile for me anymore") are heavily country-inspired but would be better labeled indie folk, sneaking in chords and progressions that wouldn't be found on country radio, and considered in the context of the album as a whole. Some HWGM fans may be disappointed with the departure from his band work, but fans of his remarkably flexible songwriting will find much to appreciate, and all may find solace in the buttery, enveloping, high tenor with dreamy falsetto that is the mainstay of all Luke Temple projects.

Customer Reviews

Luke is the man

This guy manages to be so familiar while at the same time being completely bizarre. More so on his previous albums "Snowbeast" and "Hold a Match". There is something unique about his melodic arrangements and song structures that I struggle to find in any other artist today. The live incarnation of Luke's creations, Here We Go Magic, is simply a wonder to behold. He brought together some wonderful talent to help him put on one of the most engaging live performances I've ever had the pleasure to witness. Now if i could just see HWGM drop "More than Muscle" and "How could I Lie" next time they come through Austin....

I love HWGM, but I've been dying to see Luke's solo efforts carried out on stage. Guess I'll just have to cross my fingers and wait..


Born: Salem, MA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Indie folk singer/songwriter Luke Temple was born in Salem, Massachusetts, though he lived for a time in Northern California before returning to New England as a painting student at the School of Boston's Museum of Fine Arts. After completing his studies, Temple pulled up stakes again, moving to New York City, but as he was trying to launch his career as a visual artist, he developed a new interest in music. Temple started writing songs and playing at small clubs around New York; he also began recording...
Full Bio
Don't Act Like You Don't Care, Luke Temple
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Customer Ratings