VIDEO: Peep Tempel find joy in China’s shady characters

INTENSE: The Peep Tempel’s third album Joy is critically-acclaimed for its unhinged punk rock and stories of colourful characters. DESPITE living in Melbourne, The Peep Tempel’sBlake Scott is constantly searching beyond thecity’s expanses to the far-flungreaches of for inspiration.
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Scott seeksthe stories of thedusty bar-room raconteurs or the crooks on the run,and theresults havebeen thrilling. The Peep Tempel’s past two albums Tales (2014) and Joy (2016) have been critically-acclaimed for their visceral punk-garage rockand Scott’s blistering stories of dark na thatfollowthe proud tradition of The Cosmic Psychos and The Drones.

Scott, a carpenter by trade, grew up in the Western nwheat belt town of Narrogin as the son of a truck driver. It was there among Narrogin’s pubs that Scott developed anaffinity forthe working man.

That understanding is articulated in his portraits ofhard-drinking miners (Kalgoorlie), storiesof a corrupt policemen (Constable) and angry retorts to racist (Rayguns).

“The characters in the songs are made up, but they do come from somewhere,” Scott said.“You meet these people on your travels, especially in the north of . There’s so many places that people go to hide– actually hide or hide away from society.

“In those back blocks you really meet some interesting people and you can be surprised how worldly they are and where they’ve been and what they’ve done and it’s interesting the reasons why they end up in these out posts. I’ve certainly been intrigued by isolation and the isolation you can come by in . I find that fascinating and something I’ve enjoyed myself.”

Scott is unsure where his interest in the dark side of the “lucky country” is derived. As he points out, many of his stories are littered with sarcasm.

The Peep Tempel – Rayguns“It always just seems to turn to the dark side,” he said. “It’s grotty rock’n’roll guitar music, that justhappens to be the sound that comes out when we get together. I guess it’s the platform or canvas for the characters or the topical content of the songs.

“I actually thought Joy was pretty joyous, but maybe I’m a dark person, or maybe I’m not and I’m just getting it out on a Peep Tempel record. It is a bit of fun. It’s easier to write about a crook, it keeps it interesting and it’s been fun creating these characters who are a little gnarly.”

Joy featured on various critics’ “best of” album lists last year and has enabled Peep Tempel to secure slots on the recent Golden Plains and upcoming Gum Ball music festivals.

“I guess take off is the word,” Scott said.“It started to happen with Tales. We haven’t be hurdled into the stratosphere, but we’re getting some really cool opportunities and enjoying what we’re doing. There isn’t as much hardship now.

“We actually get to enjoy it. It does get to a point where you get pretty worn out, especially in the beginning when you’re touring really hard. A few years ago we played in Newcastle to one person, so it’s nice to have that stuff behind us even though you’re learning how to be on the road together.”

The Peep Tempel perform atthe Gum Ball at Dashville on April 21-23.

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