Don’t Act Like You Don’t Care
Aug 16, 2011 #37 – St. Vincent
Find It At: Insound
What's the difference between a solo Luke Temple album and his work with Here We Go Magic, a band that formerly consisted entirely of Luke Temple? It's not merely labeling, as someone expecting to hear a Here We Go Magic record would be surprised, and perhaps disappointed by Don't Act Like You Don't Care.
Referred to as "The Country Record" during its long gestation period, Don't Act Like You Don't Care does indeed feature inflections of country, and "How Could I Lie" and "Ophelia" are out-and-out country songs, with Temple's voice taking on a yelping twang. It's amazing that Temple has such control over his vocal chords, that he can go from broken wail to sultry vamp to soaring vibrato within a couple of tracks, and sometimes within the same chorus. "Weekend Warrior" finds Temple in his Pink Floyd mode, and the aptly titled opener "In the Open" is the closest to Here We Go Magic on the record, with its lurching rhythms and galloping percussion.
Temple's burgeoning confidence in his lyrics are apparent on the beautifully mournful "Ballad for Dick George," which features such lines as, "Bird flew in, it built a nest/Now it's scrambled eggs for my breakfast." It's a tale of loneliness, a subject that Temple touches on a lot, but without this bite and clarity.
Oddly enough, despite the wide variety of styles and sounds, Don't Act Like You Don't Care is Temple's sturdiest album to date. Even at its best, Here We Go Magic has a skippable track or two, but Don't Act Like You Don't Care is rock solid. The full band has developed its own persona, and in stepping outside of it, Temple puts on display all that the band obscures from his considerable talents.
Author rating: 7/10
Average reader rating: 7/10