Our homage to Reading's now defund finest electro guitar stars including interviews, live reviews and reviews of all three TCTC albums.
Kill Music - The Cooper Temple Clause Interviews
Over the last few years the shadders team have followed The Cooper Temple Clause (prior to their split!) round the country, certain members in fact it could be said have stalked them round the globe (all across Europe and the USA). We loved them so much we dedicated to them their very own fanzine 'Kill Music'. Because of this they gave us some excellent access to the band and some exclusive interviews, three of which we've uploaded onto this website to try and give a little insight into this very special band. Please remember that they are pre Didz leaving.
Kill Music - Interview 4
We were fortunate enough to meet with the new slimmed down Coopers at Leeds Cockpit as part of their 'comeback' tour prior to releasing that third album. Despite some frantic moments with the tour manager we managed to get up stairs to the dressing rooms to find a very laid back and relaxed Cooper Temple Clause. Ben was good enough to answer some questions and Jon joined us halfway through after sorting some passes out for some friends, one of which had made the journey from Sydney to hook up with the band (that's some dedication). The rest of the band seemed happy and very relaxed whilst trying to find extra plug sockets to get some sounds going, the only way they could do this in the end was to unplug one of the fridges. So we ended up with the view of Tom on his knees emptying one fridge of booze only to put it straight into the other, that's rock and roll! We also noticed that Jon was now sporting a very sensible haircut so obviously we mentioned this to him. He quiped that his sister had just got married and his mother had pestered him everyday for three months for him to get his hair cut! You can try and lead the rock and roll lifestyle but you can't escape the power of your mother. Anyway to the questions, over to Ben. The Didz Questions: Did you see Didz's departure coming? None of us saw it coming. But with hindsight it is easy to see how difficult it was for him having to juggle family life in London, writing in Reading and recording in Bath. He was unable to do everything and Dirty Pretty Things allowed him to be based in London. In the days following Didz's departure did it cross your mind to call it a day and if so what made you carry on? We were halfway through recording the album and obviously the shock of Didz leaving hit us hard especially as we all had known each other since school. But we had enough faith in each other to continue as a five piece and we were confident that our live shows wouldn't suffer. Have you heard / seen Dirty Pretty Things and what do you think? I've heard 'Bang Bang' and it's a great song. I've yet to see them live or heard the record. Is it true that after one of the first shows after Didz had left Jon thought that you were that good that he forgot Didz had gone and then when he realised wondered who was playing bass?! Not quite. On 'Promises Promises' on our European tour Jon was unaware who was playing bass as it was sounding better than ever. The four string monster was non other than Kieran Mahon. The 'difficult' third album: Firstly what's the album called and what does this say about it & the coopers 2006? Make the Your Own. The album took longer than the others as we wanted to get it right. We're all really proud of the new songs and they've been well received on this tour so far. We assume you didn't set out to take so long to write and record the album, are there any reasons why it took so long? We wanted to progress and improve our song writing. We did not want to settle for a rehash of previous Cooper songs or albums. We have heard that the vocal duties are now being shared, who has got into the action and why? When we first started Tom, Dan and me all sang. I became lead singer because my voice broke first. Tom and Dan have sung on b sides before and the songs they sing on this album are fantastic. How do you rate the album against the previous two and what are your feelings on the other two albums now? Immense pride over the first two albums and extreme excitement about taking songs from Make This your Own on the road. What is Bleak House and how does it figure / help in the recording of the new album? Bleak House is our studio and is where all our songs originate. Do you think the fans will like the new album and do you think it'll win some new fans over? It's very different from what we've done before. People took a while to understand 'Kick up the fire…' and I'm sure that the same will apply for 'Make this your own'. This is the sound of a band moving forward. Bit's and Bat's: Has Jon still got his big daft classes and does he think they are cool?! Ben - Jon is Mr Cool! Jon - Yes and Yes! What's the idea behind the radical live reworking of Panzer Attack? Ben - Just came from a jam and we enjoyed playing it. Jon - Do something different with the old stuff so we enjoy playing it again. What's your top three fav Coopers songs and why? Ben - Far too hard! Jon - Head - new and amazing, Connect - new and amazing and All I see is you - new and very challenging to play and amazing! What were the last three albums you bought, begged or stole? Ben - King Biscuit time, I forward Russia and Dirty Three. Jon - Deus, Metric and Dirty Pretty Things. You've just set up a Coopers page on myspace, how does this differ from the official website & is it worth a look? Ben - It's just another avenue for us to interact with fans and for the fans to meet over fans. Jon - Same just Myspace which is very addictive. Are you enjoying been freed from the studio and being back on the road? Ben - Definitely it's been too long. Jon - Yes and no. Touring sucks sometimes. I'm tired plus miss my home, dog and girl!! If it all ended today what would you want on the Coopers gravestone? Ben - It is better to be than to seem to be. Jon - Rest in Piss (then much laughter!).
Kill Music - Interview 3
Post Kick up the fire, and let the flames break loose.
So it's a dull Friday night, nothing much happening and then the phone rings whose on the other end? Only Ben, none other than The Cooper Temple Clause's chief vocal talent and all round charismatic frontman. Now you'd think that interviewing the famous over the phone is a doodle but you'd be a million miles away from the trust especially if you can't do shorthand. All you have to do is act natural, chat away, ask interesting yet stimulating questions and make notes at the same time, oh and enjoy it, that my friend is no mean feat but it ain't everyday that the rock and roll hierarchy give you a bell, so here goes. First up was a quick chat about what the Cooper boy's had been up to in the studio. 'Demo'd tracks for the next album and rehearsing for the American tour. We've finished five tracks but have forty ideas on the go. We've all got the ability to record on the road and share ideas with laptops. We're not rushing the next record, maybe get some songs together and get them played live. All the ideas we have are completely different, lot more jagged, all five new songs sound different to one another'. As we well know that's the beauty of the Coopers, there's a common thread through each and every track but they still have the ability to sound completely different and utterly unique. Next up a bit of light relief, a favourite Coopers song? 'All our favourite song playing live is Music Box' and the least favourite? 'Haven't got one, proud of them all'. And why not lets be honest there any many duff ones out there. A slight variance on this theme, what about the best Coopers video? 'Has to be Blind Pilots, loved the directors idea, not just a band playing in a dingy room'. Would you have fancied taking the lead role,' No! Keiron, I can see that or Jon would be good with hoofs!' From hoofs the conversation obviously turned to Didz, 'It's been quite a strange time, with the illness while recording the last album but now he's got a lovely little girl, Nico. I think he's coming to the Uk shows, it's his birthday on Monday at Manchester'. Didz has a spot of paternity leave for the US tour so who's doing the honours? 'Dan Austin, who's a producer. He's the same age as us, not some fifty year old bassist, he's the next bast alternative to Didz. He's played bass in a previous band, really talented, won't disrupt the balance, really he's seventh Cooper member!' Speaking of getting back on the road, is Ben looking forward getting back stateside on the Cure tour? 'Really looking forward to it, best line up we've ever been on, Cure, Muse and Interpol.' Do you actually like The Cure? 'Yeah, got a few Cure Cd's and been given a Dvd to watch so I'm really looking forward to seeing them'. It's not the first time you've toured on the other side of the pond, how did it go last time? 'Great response to it, great response from the American fans and journalists we met'. And what do you offer to the American's that other band's don't? ' Don't know really, passion I suppose. Americans like to see bands who can play their instruments but a lot of band out there seem to just go through the motions'. So what about the Uk when can we see a bit more of you? 'Later in 2004, want to get out and play some new songs'. So that's about that, I thank Ben which seems to embarrass him at tad, but I'm sure he's more used to doing this sort of stuff than I am and then he's gone, back to doing whatever rock star's do with a few spare hours. I on the other hand have had a dull Friday night brightened, amazing what a phone call can do!
Kill Music - Interview 2
Post Kick up the fire, and let the flames break loose.
With a bunch fanzines in hand and in true 'Busted' style we crashed the party or even just the coopers tour bus on their support to Black Rebel Motorcycle Club to force Jon, drum wizard and general all round animal and key maestro Kieran to answer these foolish questions! Q1, What's the best thing about being in TCTC? Jon - Being part of an amazing group of people, travelling the world and having a party every night. Kieran - Playing loud music, travelling loud music, drinking beer and meeting strangers! Q2, And what's the worst thing about being in TCTC? Kieran - Having to wake up with 12 other men on a small submarine type space after a night of kebab meat. Jon - Lack of space. Trying to be heard! Q3, How will The Cooper Temple Clause 'crack' America? Jon - We are a very good live band and we will put the work in. We are willing to do whatever is needed and hopefully it will work. Kieran - Hopefully by spending the rest of our lives touring over there. Q4, What's your favourite Cooper's song and why? Kieran - The same Mistakes - great to play live, some of the best lyrics and melody on 'kick up the fire'. Dan - New Toys. The drum part is insane. Just love playing it live, I have to be on my toys. Q5, Please rate both your albums out of ten and give a reason for your decision: Debut album - See this through and leave. Jon - 6 / 10. Wasn't really happy with some of my takes. Was going through a load of shit at the time, hated the whole process of that album. Kieran - 7 / 10. First album could have sounded better if we knew what we were doing! Second album - Kick up the fire, and let the flames break loose. Kieran - 9 / 10. Second record where we had a better idea of what we were doing and got the sounds we wanted. Jon - 7 / 10. Really enjoyed the album recording. Parts are good, album works as a whole. Q6, The Darkness - genius or Whitesnake tribute band? Jon - Toss. Met the drummer, he is the epitomy of Spinal Tap, lives with his head up his arse! Dan - Whitesnake! Q7, Favourite TCTC song and why? (oops bit like question 4!!) Kieran - Derelict - some of my favourite coopers music on this b side. Q8, Which pop / rock star would you most like to be if you weren't in TCTC? Kieran - Natalie Imbruglia - so I could look at myself all day long and be happy! Jon - Maybe if he hadn't just passed away Joe Strummer. Q9, If you weren't an international rock star what would you be doing now? Jon - I would have stayed in Uni so by now I would have been an architect. Kieran - Some sort of sporting hero or actor probably more famous than I am now. Q10, What's the difficult third album going to sound like and any ideas on a long title for it yet? Kieran - Early ideas sound diverse with influences from 'do make say think', 'Tortoise' to 'Beck'. Still early days but we are working on a long awkward title. Jon - More up beat, shorter songs. More rocking but the usual coopers musically. Q11, Which pop star would you most like to punch?! Jon - Robbie Williams. Punch him then set him on fire, 80m my arse!! Kieran - Either our singer Ben or Robbie Williams. Hard on the arm, dead.
Kill Music - Interview 1
Pre See this through and leave Back when The Cooper Temple Clause were mere 'new kids on the block' we stalked round the toilet venues of the UK until Jon and Didz gave us an exclusive insight into the minds of the 'coopers'. Having recently re-read the interview after a couple of years and indeed albums I realized it actually still sounded pretty damn good, so here it is in full! Q1, Come on be honest where is the name from! ELMORE LEONARD GAVE A SPEECH WHEN HE OPENED THE BROAD STREET MALL IN READING AND HE WOULDN'T SHUT UP ABOUT "THE COOPER TEMPLE CLAUSE". I CARNT EVEN REMEMBER WHAT IT IS NOW, BUT IT WAS A LONG STANDING JOKE IN READING. ASK THE SUNSET SOUND ABOUT IT. Q2, In ten words describe the CTC sound A CONFUSED MESS OF VARIED INFLUENCES INCLUDING DAVID LEE ROTH. Q3, Would you agree with the statement that CTC are the best new band in Britain at the moment? WE'RE GOOD AND WE HAVE THE UTMOST CONFIDENCE IN OURSELVES AND OUR MUSIC BUT I DON'T THINK WE'VE COME ANYWHERE NEAR PROVING OURSELVES WORTHY OF THAT BILLING. ANYWAY, AREN'T YOU A BETTER JUDGE OF THAT THAN ME? Q4, You're getting quite a lot of press but have you had any really bad reviews and if so do you care? WE'VE HAD QUITE A FEW BAD REVIEWS. WE DON'T REALLY CARE. MUSIC IS A PERSONAL AND OPINION BASED THING SO YOU HAVE TO EXPECT THAT SOME PEOPLE REALLY WON'T LIKE YOU. I'D RATHER HAVE 90% OF AN AUDIENCE ABSOLUTELY HATE US AND THE OTHER 10% VIOLENTLY LOVE US THAN EVERYONE JUST THINK IT WAS QUITE GOOD. IF YOU'RE IN THAT POSITION AND HAPPY WITH IT YOU'RE DOING IT FOR SHIT REASONS. YOU'RE BASICALLY MATCHBOX 20 OR SOMEONE IF THAT'S THE CASE. IF YOU PROVOKE A STRONG OPINION/REACTION, WHETHER IT'S GOOD OR BAD, THEN YOU'VE CONNECTED WITH THE AUDIENCE AND CAUSED THEM TO SHOW SOME PASSION AND ZEST WHICH CARNT BE A BAD THING. Q5, You all take turns at singing / playing different instruments, why? And does this cause rows in the band with everyone wanting to be the singer?! THE WAY THAT WE WRITE KIND OF LENDS ITSELF TO INSTRUMENT SWAPPING. EVERYONE CAN PLAY EACH INSTRUMENT QUITE WELL AND DOES WHEN WE'RE JUST JAMMING OR WHATEVER SO WHOEVER MAKES SOMETHING UP (A BASSLINE, A SQUEAKY NOISE, WHATEVER) ON WHATEVER INSTRUMENT, GETS TO PLAY IT. I SOMETIMES HAVE TO SING IF BEN LOSES HIS VOICE. Q6, To those who have never seen TCTC live what can they expect? ENERGY I GUESS. YOU'LL PROBABLY SEE OUR BOXER SHORTS AT SOME STAGE COS OUR TROUSERS ALWAYS FALL DOWN. HALF THE BAND SITTING DOWN. FRANTIC POUTING. PARAMEDICS. THE F.B.I.... I DON'T KNOW........Q7, Have you been in bands prior to TCTC and if so what did they sound like (rumour has it that a couple of the band were in an Oasis tribute band!) TOM AND BEN HAVE BEEN PLAYING TOGETHER FOR AGES IN VARIOUS 2, 3 AND 4 MAN INCARNATIONS. FISHER PLAYED WITH THEM FOR AGES TOO. KIERAN WAS IN A PRE-N.A.M. ACCOUSTIC BAND CALLED FLEECE. JON WAS IN LEGENDARY GUILDFORD UNDERGROUND INDIE OUTFIT HOTEL LOUNGE AND I WAS IN A BAND CALLED SMURF, THEN A BAND THAT SOUNDED LIKE U2 AND THEN I JOINED NO WAY SIS AS A FILL IN FOR THEIR PSEUDO-BONEHEAD FOR A COUPLE OF MONTHS WHILE HIS GIRLFRIEND HAD A BABY. THE RUMOUR IS TRUE.Q8,What bands have influenced The Cooper Temple Clause sound? PINKFLOYD NIRVANA PRIMALSCREAM LEDZEPPELIN RADIOHEAD SOUNDGARDEN APHEXTWIN TORTOISE GODSPEEDYOUBLACKEMPEROR OASIS BLURG RANDADDY SONICYOUTH THECHEMICALBROTHERS THEBETABAND SPIRITUALIZED SQUAREPUSHER DJSHADOW......AND BLINK 182. HAHAHA. Q9, How would you describe 'Panzer Attack' to somebody who has never heard it? KICK-ASS SPACE PUNK Q10, Have you any rock n' roll stories from your time on the road so far? WRITING ON HOTEL WALLS. FINDING THAT FISHER'S GOT SIX TOES ON HIS LEFT FOOT. BLOW JOBS. COCAINE. MUSHROOMS (BEN DOESN'T LIKE THEM). FIRE EXTINGUISHER FIGHTS. CHAMPAGNE ENEMAS. Y'KNOW, NORMAL STUFF. Q11, What can we expect from the debut CTC album and have you recorded it yet? WE'RE RECORDING IT RIGHT NOW. WE'VE GOT 12 TRACKS DOWN AND WE HAVEN'T STARTED ON OUR REGULAR SET OF SONGS YET. WRITING AS WE GO IS COMING VERY EASILY. EACH SONG SOUNDS DIFFERENT FROM THE LAST, DRAWING PRIMARILY FROM THE ABOVE POOL OF INFLUENCES. IT SOUNDS GOOD. ROCKING IN PLACES AND FLYING IN PLACES AND THEN FALLING OVER AND RUNNING AWAY AGAIN.....I DON'T KNOW......Q12, What's the CTC masterplan to world domination? Or haven't you got one! WE'RE GONNA GO TO CITY HALL AND COME OUT WITH A HEAD ON A SPIKE! NOT REALLY. WE JUST WANT TO MAKE MUSIC.........MAAAAN. AND GET FUCKED UP.Q13, Why do you want to kill music? TOO MUCH APATHY AND COMPROMISE AND NOVELTY. NOT ENOUGH SOUL. I HOPE THE ECONOMY GOES DOWN THE PAN AND THEN PEOPLE WILL START TO WANT SINCERITY AND FEELING AGAIN INSTEAD OF A SCHOOL DISCO. TOP OF THE POPS WILL STOP LOOKING LIKE A CHILD'S BIRTHDAY PARTY.
The Cooper Temple Clause - Album Reviews
We love The Cooper Temple Clause and have done from the get go. We were one of the lucky few to receive the 'Crayons' demo cd (and still have it in our collection thanks very much) and it lit our fires musically so to speak. It was very much different to virtually everything else around them, very cool, rocky but with that edge provided by the gadgets and gizmos. They were that good that they spawned their very own spin off dedicated fanzine 'Kill Music' which took it's name from one of the best singles of all time which just so happened surprisingly enough to be one of theirs! Time has passed and two excellent albums released (reviews of both below) and we still love them. Plus we've added that 'difficult' third album reviews too. This is fuelled by awesome live shows and hasn't been dampened by the defection of Didz to join Carl Barat's little project. The Cooper Temple Clause also have one of the best names in music and that's enough in our humble opinion to love them!
The Cooper Temple Clause - Make this your own (Morning / Sanctuary)
Intro - It's been a weird time without the Coopers, one of shaddersonline fav bands ever. Music seems again to have moved on along with founding member Didz to join Libertines tribute band Dirty Pretty Things. Third albums are notoriously difficult and have up ended many a band without the added trials of losing a member. That aside they have re-grouped and gone back to the studio and taken their time to come up with that 'difficult' third album. Did they leave it too long? Will the third album jinx strike? Time to load up 'Make this your own' and find out the truth track by track.
1,Damage - First up the 'comeback' single which when when we first heard it sounded a little disjointed but a few plays later and it really grows. Great chorus, choppy guitars and brilliant Ben vocals. Quite a poppy little number and a great opener. 8/10.
2,Homo Sapiens - Christ what a tune; harder, stronger and faster than anything that the Coopers have done before this eclipses everything from Kill Music through Panzer Attack and Blind Pilots. Ben's vocals snarl and rasp whilst guitars and drums are given a bloody good hammering and lyrically it's sound as a pound. Despite been hard as nails it still manages a killer chorus and a pop sensibility and that ain't easy. Quite honestly it's fucking ace! 10/10.
3, Head - 'Head' completes a killer opening trio, a bit more electro than the previous duo and has a bit of a 80's synth feel to it but they don't feel anyway out of place with a pacey drum beat. Ben's vocals again shine on as song that sounds like coopers of old whilst still having a new edge to it. 9/10.
4, Connect - Now this is where it starts going a little strange, firstly there are the heavy synth influences and Ben don't do the vocals which sound a bit like Damon (Blur / Gorillaz). Behind the synth is actually quite a simple song, which after a while hooks you in and has your blessing despite it's failings. 8/10.
5, Waiting Game - This is quite a simple straight forward pop rock tune with quite a catching chorus, sounds like a number of other songs of a similar ilk. Quite a pleasant canter but not really that challenging. 7/10.
6, Once More with feeling - This is a dark one, heavy edged with ugly vocals. Not pleasant like 'Waiting game' but short and bruising. 6/10.
7, What have you gone and done? - Now this is a decent tune, never reaches the heights of 'Damage' or 'Homo sapiens' but again the chorus does good business. Jon's drums lead up to natty guitar solo and then vocals re-appear with some great accompanying strings. 8/10.
8, Take Comfort - Now this is very weird, a very simple uncomplicated but poppy tune with strong vocals. Not very cooperlike with samples pushed aside for a jangley guitar feel. Unusual but not unpleasant. 6/10.
9, All I see is you - One of the slow burners that the Coopers always slot onto albums and b-sides. It springs into live around the four-minute mark with Ben's growling vocals mixed in with heavy guitars and strings. Possibly the type of song that the Coopers have made a name for themselves with it's six minutes of trademark variety, part dark slow burning almost smouldering build up and fires into top gear with a burning ending. 8/10.
10, Isn't it Strange - Change of vocal duties actually helps this, a decent pace and stomping guitars again with the killer almost pop like chorus. Another uncomplicated rock romp that is sure easy on the ear and to be honest should really be the end track. 7/10.
11, House of Cards - Doesn't really go anywhere this one, quite of just ambles through minutes without hitting any heights or pushing the cooper boundaries. Of interest for the mixed vocals duties but does sound more like a b-side than a climax to an album and does sound like it has a trumpet on it! 6/10.
Verdict - Firstly it has to be said another hit on the artwork front, hats off to Richard Sweeny for the design concept. Now onto the music, lets say straight away that it isn't a disaster but we have to admit that like other Cooper albums it does take a few listen through to get really and we do mean really into. It kicks off at an amazing rate and the trio of 'Damage', 'Homo sapiens' and 'Head' is one hell of a way to start any album, that could actually be a big problems that they do seem to peak a bit early! 'Homo Sapiens' is possibly the best or if not in the top three or four of Coopers tunes, it is quite simply awesome. On the flip side there are a few songs that don't come near to previous work, 'House of Cards', 'Take Comfort' and 'Once more with feeling' do have the feel of b-sides promoted to the big leagues. So what do we have then? Well a mixed bag that fortunately has more winners than losers and is definitely worth a spin. And where do the Coopers go from here then? Well hopefully straight back into the studio, promote Ben to sole singer (as that's one major thing that hasn't really worked as well as probably they hoped on 'Make this your own') and keep kicking up the flames. The fire hasn't gone out but could do with a few more logs thrown on to let the flames break loose once again. File under - Difficult third album, partial success!
SEE THIS THROUGH AND LEAVE
This is the debut much anticipated debut album featuring the classic dance floor fillers as 'Panzer Attack' and obviously 'Kill Music'. Limited numbers came with a free live CD and promo's came in a rather natty red embossed sleeve. Here's the shadders / kill music view & track by track ratings.
1, DID YOU MISS ME? 4mins 40secs KM RATING 8 / 10.
Live Fave. Bit of as slow starter, delicate vocals and effects until about 2 mins in when it becomes darker and faster. Ends with a blast and a scream.
2, FILM - MAKER 2mins 56secs KM RATING 8 / 10.
2002 Single (double a side). Raucous, straightforward rock tune pushing buzzing guitars to the fore. Fades straight into…
3, PANZER ATTACK 4mins 01secs KM RATING 10 / 10.
Live Fave. 2001 single. Always felt a bit out there as a single but fits snuggly in the live arena and here as the filling in a noise sandwich. An absolute beast of a track dripping energy with a monster mix of guitars, effects and drum beats. Hard to beat.
4, WHO NEEDS ENEMIES? 4mins 52secs KM RATING 8 / 10.
Live Fave. 2002 single. Another fantastic song which has been given a bit of a make over for the LP. More tuneful than Panzer but still great 'Clause and a real gem. A killer key change is all you need, indeed!
5, AMBER 5mins 07secs KM RATING 8 / 10.
Live Fave. A break in pace, Amber sees the 'Clause in more reflective mood.
6, DIGITAL OBSERVATIONS 7mins 12secs KM RATING 8 / 10.
New Track. Another slow burner, Ben's vocals up front with a strumming guitar for company. Fortunately they don't go beyond the pale with the samples and effects so the mood is kept relatively intact.
7, LET'S KILL MUSIC 4mins 13secs KM RATING 10 / 10.
Live Fave. 2001 single. Tempo is back up with the 'Clause's musical millstone and by god what a millstone. It's difficult to see past it live and down on record it remains that good. It has the lot mesmerizing guitars, great lyrics and ludicrous pace. No wonder it spawned a fanzine all on it's own!
8, 555 - 4828 4mins 54secs KM RATING 7 / 10.
New Track. Distorted samples kick off this unusual offering. It has a similar vibe to The Charlatans instrument '109pt2' from their debut 'Some Friendly' only with a harder bite and more metallic edge. A little out of place but gives the listener a break before….
9, BEEN TRAINING DOGS 3mins 13secs KM RATING 7 / 10.
2002 single (double a side). Back to the meat and drink this is a more formulaic rock run through. Good but not great.
10, THE LAKE 5mins 20secs KM RATING 9 / 10.
Live Fave. A fave of many a cooperholic, more complex and well balanced not an immediate track but give it a few spins and you'll be smitten. Features some great guitar work and a number of pace changes culminating in a frenetic ending.
11, MURDER SONG 8mins 46secs KM RATING 8 / 10.
New Track. A dignified and self-effacing end, Murder Song is the 'Clause at their most two faced, sinister lyrics (a la Nick Cave) and sweet on the ear. Not the expected ending but both this and The Lake are perhaps the most thought provoking songs amongst the eleven. "Please believe me when I say this is how it has to end", for now anyway.
TOTAL KM RATING 91 / 110. AVERAGE RATING 8.27!
KM VERDICT - That's some rating for a debut album, our verdict then is a close second but even so beg, steal or import you should own this album!
KICK UP THE FIRE, AND LET THE FLAMES BREAK LOOSE
After the success of the debut, The Coopers went away for quite a while to bring us a worthy follow up in Kick up the fires. The artwork on the album was far superior to See this thru and once again there was a limited edition with a DVD featuring live audio tracks and video's. So how did shadders / kill music judge Kick up the fires? Here once again is track by track details, reviews and ratings.
1, THE SAME MISTAKES 4min 52sec KM RATING 9 / 10.
A great way to kick of the second album, it almost lives up to the album title, starting off in sombre mood but breaks off about 3 minutes then really livens up to a cracking pace to end.
2, PROMISES PROMISES 3min 25sec KM RATING 9 / 10 .
The most obvious and immediate track on the album therefore the first choice for a single release. That actually sounds quite negative but it isn't meant to as it's a cracking tune, quite 'filmmaker-esq' and already a live favourite with the energy jumping off the record into the live arena. Some great guitar rifts.
3, NEW TOYS 5min 26sec KM RATING 9 / 10.
Back to the slow starters but soon whips up into a typically intense coopers tune after a minute or so. The lyrics are quite dark too. Worth a listen and often touted as a probable single release but would possibly need a prune at the end for that which would be a bit of a shame.
4, TALKING TO A BRICK WALL 5min 59sec KM RATING 8 / 10.
Anyone who has seen Get Carter might think the intro of track 4 nods a bit of a wink to that classic movie soundtrack. Another track from the broody TCTC songbook which again blows up after a couple of build up minutes, typical Coopers. The final minute or so is real classic stuff.
5, INTO MY ARMS 6min13sec KM RATING 7 / 10.
Almost stripped down to just Ben's vocals for well over four minutes, this is simple, powerful stuff. Sounding like Pink Floyd at their pomp but fortunately not their overblown bullshit excess phase. They indulge themselves with a bit of electro noodlings at the end but feels right into a floyd sort of way so they just about get away with it!
6, BLIND PILOTS 4min 01sec KM RATING 10 / 10.
The obvious second single, 'Blind Pilots' sounds about as poppy as the coopers will get these days, it's really stunning sing-a-long stuff and catchy as hell. Top quality stuff which what has to be said a truly bizarre video!
7, A.I.M 4min 58sec KM RATING 9 / 10.
Already a well known Coopers track due to the give away single from cooper fans NME well before the album release. Harder than 'Promises Promises' and 'Blind Pilots' and with quite a fuzzy feel in parts it's still a cracking tune and a great appetizer for the album when distributed.
8, MUSIC BOX 6min 24sec KM RATING 10 / 10.
Moving away from singles back into the darker minds of the coopers, you've invited into to take a peak into the coopers world, 'This is my music box, and this my home, come in take a look if you like'. But beware it's scary stuff lyrically and musically.
9, IN YOUR PRIME 2min 17sec KM RATING 6 / 10.
Quite a strange one this mainly just Ben's voice and drums and really short, not typical coopers and is almost out of place on here.
10, WRITTEN APOLOGY 10min12sec KM RATING 9 / 10.
'We love the way you move' could well be an ode to the fans almost worship to the coopers live but this is another strange one taking the boys out of their more traditional territory for a good four minutes until it builds up to a real tour de force. It breaks down again for an effects led build up sounds a bit panzer attack in feel into a free flow cooper blow out.
TOTAL KM RATING 86 / 100. AVERAGE 8.6 RATING!
KM VERDICT - The winner by a short head - fantastic!
The Cooper Temple Clause - Live Reviews
I've looked back and found a few live reviews to fit nicely into our coopers section that pays homage to all things 'clause.
Barnsley Lucorum, September 2006
Venue: Now it can't often be said that a brand new venue locally opens it's doors for business especially in what used to be the cultural wasteland of Barnsley. The Lucorum is best known for been the clubbers club and as such has a pretty cool reputation. The music venue itself is something a bit different as it's a glass roofed atrium in the middle of two old stone buildings which house the expensive bars! It's not massive but nice and airy but with a nice sized stage it's an intimate affair. Support: First up are upcoming local soundscapers Vib Gyor. This lot are gaining a bit of a rep even appearing on local news after a cracking Leeds Festival appearance and with performances like this we're not suprised. Like Doves and Longview there's plenty of epic sounds, good start then. It goes off the boil with This et al who frankly a bit dull. They look the part but you get the feeling they are trying just too hard. As they leave the stage to minimal applause you can see in their faces it didn't work tonight and that's a fair conclusion. The band: We got the feeling that the band were under some pressure on their last tour it been the first one in the post Didz era. Tonight however they seem relaxed by some considerable alocohol intake and it shows in a more comfortable performance, one they really get into. The Music: This is how a gig should be a good selection of new and old stuff, let's face it we all want to hear new tracks but deep down you really want to hear those old gems once more. They start with a new one ('Head' marked on the setlist) and it sounds pretty damn good too. The midset pairing of new singles 'Homosapians' and 'Damage' is somewhat of a masterstroke. The current single 'Homosapians' gets a fantastic reception and so it should, top Coopers stuff. 'Damage' makes a lot more sense live, sounding a bit disjointed on vinyl but paired here with the other new single they sound awesome. Another newie later on with Ben again taking main vocal reigns sounds like what can only be described as elctro hardcore pop rock, typical coopers never one to fit into one pidgeon hole. And now onto the fans favourite part of the evening, the oldies! We have traditional set stalwarts like 'Aim' and revitalised 'Who needs enemies', a killer keychance is all you need indeed! Then what should be to finish we have the song reworking to end all reworkings, 'Panzar Attack' was always a jaw dropping brute of a song but now it's a real monster. We dare anyone to stand still when this dance fuelled rock beast is in full flow. Highlight: The stunning return to form is a real plus and the duo of 'Homosapians' and 'Damage' sound great together. But the real highlight is the interaction between band and crowd, both truely feed off each other especially in a new venue and town never visited before. The reaction to 'Panzar Attack' so momumental that the band come back for a totally unplanned encore of 'Blind Pilots', so much of a suprise the roadies have taken down half the equipment! Verdict: Cool venue, great crowd reaction and a romping performance by the Coopers. Storming return to form and how!
Leeds Festival, August 2005
It's been somewhat of a while since they've been around, holed up in the studio with that 'difficult' third album for company. So what gives today? Is it going to be a storming, victorious return or are going to witness a pre third album opus disaster?
Five minutes before they are due on stage a lad turns to his mate and utters "there ain't many in 'ere are there", his companion looks round and confirms that the tent isn't exactly what you'd consider to be packed out. But as the minutes tick by the tent fills slowly to present the returning stars a reasonable crowd to look out upon especially due to the length of time away and the distance from home turf.
Then back on the stage the lads are and it looks like Ben has changed substantially but it actually turns out to electronic knob twiddler Tom taking charge of vocal duties. It's the first of four new tracks aired, which seem to move to a more die cast rock sound rather than their renowned left field electro rock collision sound. Ben soon regains control of centre stage for 'Damage' which has the kind of verve that bodes well for a possible single release, it's still more straight rock with a line of flexing guitars along the stage edge. To add to the variety of the new material later sees Keiron take the vocal reigns, which is greeted with great crowd approval.
So great some new stuff and it goes down well but it's a festival and what do festival crowds really love to do? Oh yes rock out to some proven classics and on this score the coopers sure don't disappoint. Well then 'Promises Promises' is lapped up and gives the tent some real action. 'New Toys' is a real gem thrown into the festival mix and is greeted with a pretty damn warm response. But it's the finale that is the highlight and possibly the biggest surprise too. 'Panzer Attack' is a monster of a song but here it is given one hell of a techno, electro, hardcore fusion intro which seemingly lasts forever much to the tents enjoyment. Once it finally kicks in it really kicks in and kicks off in fact with punters flying all over the place!
So have we witnessed a triumph or a disaster? Well it's always difficult to play new stuff at festivals especially if there's no new album in the offing but to be fair it ain't no disaster and the crowds response is well favourable so congrats on a job well done. But must dash it's down to the main stage to see what all the fuss is about as The Killers are on in five and then it's a dash back for a packed end to the day in the tent to see Kasabian, festivals god love 'em!
Footnote - I was lucky enough to blagg my way backstage for a while and happened across Didz whom I've been fortunate to chat to on numerous occasions. I had a brief chat with him about how the album was going, how they were looking forward to getting back on stage and how it had gone at Reading. I kept it brief as he was sat with the singer of Kasabian at the time sharing a couple of beers but everything seemed rosy in the coopers garden. It came as a surprise as just a few weeks later Didz walked to join up with the non smackhead ex Libertine, just shows you can never tell what's going on when it comes to bands behind closed doors.
Manchester Band on the wall, July 2004
Why? A select pre-American few dates jaunt round the country to get back into the live groove in front of a few friendly faces. Plus the important job of blooding a new member albeit a temporary one, ladies and gentlemen welcome Dan Austin (big beard and all). Weather? It's Manchester, it's summer and it's pissing it down outside… The Venue? The Band on the Wall is a very cool place, it's a tad on the run down side but that all adds to it's charm. Not a huge place adds to a good sense of getting something special here. It's a bloody hot place though, some proper air con would be nice and that's even before they take the stage. On the plus side there a decent enough range of beers and it's not London prices! Setlist? Now this is where it gets a bit controversial as no 'Kill Music' nor 'Who needs Enemies' but what you're missing is made up for what you get for your money! For the old times there's 'Amber', 'The Lake' and double A side singles 'Been training dogs' and 'Film-Maker'. Then from the 'Kick up the..' album we have crowd pleasers 'Blind Pilots' and 'Promises Promises' then there's the Cooper's self confessed favourite live song 'Music Box'. Add to this some rare b sides and plenty of Fisher's vocals and you're in for a treat. The Gig? Now I'd like to write an impartial review of this gig, maybe stood with my pipe and notepad at the back of the venue, taking notes whilst sipping on a brandy or two but that ain't what happened. What happened is that The Cooper's fucking rocked so hell to it all, I ended up in the third row rocking out covered in sweat with the best of 'em. Now those in the know knew that it was Didz birthday and he was off paternity leave for one night to watch his replacement in action… yeah right. What we got was more Cooper's for our money with Didz joining in, twin bass now there's a quality idea. The band looked like they enjoyed themselves, I can definitely say the crowd enjoyed themselves and everyone ended up covered in sweat! Fav Song? Now I have to say I'm partial to 'Music Box', it's like about three songs in one and live it's awesome but hats off to the finale of 'Panzer Attack', cracking. Conclusion? Well to sum up…..Fucking brilliant! The lad's got a decent warm up, played a variety of songs and Dan seemed to fit into the mix perfectly. Didz seemed to have a rather splendid time, back to the dirty nappies as the band jet off stateside, but a great birthday none the less. Then what did the fans get out of it? Well, seeing the band in a cracking intimate venue is nice, exciting line up changes and songwise, some old favs, different b sides and a lot of quality. Not bad then, oh and on a footnote my white trainers took so much of a battering darn the front I had to put them in the washer when I got home, the sign of a true enjoyment!
Leeds Metro University, November 03
It's like hell's kitchen in here, packed to the rafters, sweat everywhere and that's even before the coopers take to the stage. It's time to kick on, I was not overly impressed by a rather limp T in the Park performance (my last TCTC homage) which isn't right. I should be in a sweat induced coma for days after every coopers live experience but no it was just okay, I didn't really understand that concept. But since then there's been the second album and now 'kill music' expects, to quote some dead pop star, 'here I am now, entertain me'!
So is it the return to form expected, fucking too right it is! Nobody is leaving hell's kitchen disappointed nor sweat free tonight; it's a classic alright. You can tell it's one of those nights, there's a guy stood behind me hollowing for the coopsters to 'play some old stuff', they completely disregard his request and storm into 'Promises Promises' and he goes crazy for it!
So you want some old stuff then? How about probably the definitive 'The Devil walks in the sand' and then huge chunks of 'See this through and leave' kicked out to mass acclaim and general jumping around madness and mayhem. 'Panzer Attack' is it's usual tour de force, 'Let's Kill Music' is an absolute gem and 'Film-maker' is a real treat. It's getting hotter and hotter in the kitchen with sweat even dripping from Ben's longhaired floppy soaked fringe!
The real eye opener is that not only does 'Kick up the fire, and let the flames break loose' tracks get as good as reception but most are as good if not better than their well known predecessors. The tour promoting single 'Blind Pilots' is exceptional, accessible and catchy as hell and even more leftfield tracks like 'Music Box', a real slow burner which builds up and builds up really kicks ass. You've really got to hand it to the cooper lads, it's not too often you can run out of words to describe how good a band are but I have tonight, just sheer cooper class.
In hell's kitchen tonight the devil ain't walking in the sand, no he's down the front giving it fucking loads bowing down to the might of The Cooper Temple Clause and he isn't the only one either!
• 1 - A.I.M
• 2 - PROMISES, PROMISES
• 3 - WHO NEEDS ENEMIES?
• 4 - BLIND PILOTS
• 5 - NEW TOYS
• 6 - LET'S KILL MUSIC
• 7 - MURDER SONG
• 8 - FILM-MAKER
• 9 - BEEN TRAINING DOGS
• 10 - DEVIL WALKS IN THE SAND
• 11 - THE LAKE
• 12 - DID YOU MISS ME?
• 13 - PANZER ATTACK