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You may not have heard of Tempertwig, but you may have heard, and maybe even loved the bands that Tempertwig regenerated into: Nosferatu D2 and The Superman Revenge Squad Band. Tempertwig were together from 1999 to 2004 and featured brothers Ben (Vocals/Guitar), Adam Parker (Drums) along with Daniel Debono on bass, they only ever played a few gigs and then disappeared without a fanfare. However, never ones to let a good thing go to waste, Audio Antihero (and new DIY label Randy Sadage) have dug out a bunch of recordings and made them available on a compilation called "FAKE NOSTALGIA: An Anthology of Broken Stuff", a superb retrospective of a raw and raucous band at their youthful beginnings. To celebrate the album's release, 15 years after they split up, Ben and Adam talk to us about their live music history, as punters and musicians for Gigography #5.
AS A FAN
Ad: "Ben took me to see Dinosaur Jr for my first ever gig, and I remember my ears still ringing for days later - was an amazing, very enjoyable experience."
Ben: "I've seen the Fall loads of times, and they are either great or appalling. All the bad gigs blend into one. I can remember them coming on so late that I only saw one song then had to get the train back to Croydon once, and that one song was dominated by Mark E Smith just fiddling with the amps and annoying the band."
Ben: "the gig that comes to mind was once when I saw Bonnie Prince Billy and he had a great, great band with Jim White on drums. Will Oldham can be the most charismatic performer I have ever seen, like you are seeing a proper rock star, which surprised me when I fist saw him. The only difficult thing about the gig was the outfit that Will went for (formal white shirt and black shoes, with dungarees), which was hard to watch."
Ad: "I saw KoRn just after the Life is Peachy album came out, and it was immense - I'm not usually one to jump around at gigs, but the entire venue from front to back was doing so, and the energy of that crowd was something I've not experienced since"
Gig/tour I wish I’d seen
Ben: "I regret not going to see the Smashing Pumpkins at Madam Jojos, but I couldn't convince any of my friends to go with me, and instead got talked into going to see Soul Asylum (bloody Soul Asylum) at, I think, the Astoria. This was back in the days of Siamese Dream, when Billy Corgan had hair and I was a big fan of that album. Not such a fan now to be honest, but I still think it would had been a gig to have gone to."
AS A MUSICIAN
First gig I ever played
Ad: "I used to be in a punk band that used to play ridiculously fast songs, and our first gig was in an independent music shop in Croydon - it was a small shop, on a Saturday afternoon, and I was squashed in a corner next to a rack of CD's"
Most memorable gig I played
Ben: "I used to really like a band called the Male Nurse, and after a few very early tempertwig gigs we were asked to play with them at the Bull and Gate. However, not sure, but I think it was the last gig they did as, if I remember correctly, they had a fight after the soundcheck and then only the singer and keyboard player made it to the gig. Still very memorable though."
Ad: with my current band, we played in a pub in Leytonstone, and it had the best, most responsive audience I've ever seen - unfortunately it was made up of only 8 people (in the 150 capacity venue), but they more than made up for it, including rocking out with 2 inflatable guitars while we played.
Most nerve-racking gig I played
Ben: "The first couple of gigs were the worst in terms of nerves. Then you realise that, at most gigs, most people don't know who you are and are pretty indifferent to be honest. Once you grasp this, it makes the nerves subside somewhat. Then you begin a quest to make them pay attention somehow. Once I started getting into this state of mind, we did a gig where a skinhead through stuff at us throughout our set; that was quite nerve-racking."
Smallest gig I played
Ben: "I did a Superman Revenge Squad gig once where, I'm pretty sure, only one person turned up. But they did seem to enjoy it, so it wasn't too bad."
Biggest gig I played
Ad: "with Nosferatu D2, we opened for Los Campesinos! and Sky Larkin, to a packed (I'm guessing sold-out) audience"