Two Thousand Miles (Owen Temple)

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - J. Poet
This solid album first came out as a digital download on LoneStarTunes.com in 2007 and, later on, on Lone Star Music, where it landed in the Top Ten alongside albums by Ryan Bingham and Shooter Jennings. The tunes may be older, but none of them sounds dated, either musically or lyrically. Owen Temple has been called a country artist, but he could just as easily be called folk, rock, Americana, or singer/songwriter. He crafts sprightly melodies and marries them to great lyrics full of insight and plainspoken poetry. He's also quite funny, which may hamper him in the marketplace, where humorous singers are often dismissed, but there's enough of an edge to his tunes to keep you ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - J. Poet
This solid album first came out as a digital download on LoneStarTunes.com in 2007 and, later on, on Lone Star Music, where it landed in the Top Ten alongside albums by Ryan Bingham and Shooter Jennings. The tunes may be older, but none of them sounds dated, either musically or lyrically. Owen Temple has been called a country artist, but he could just as easily be called folk, rock, Americana, or singer/songwriter. He crafts sprightly melodies and marries them to great lyrics full of insight and plainspoken poetry. He's also quite funny, which may hamper him in the marketplace, where humorous singers are often dismissed, but there's enough of an edge to his tunes to keep you from taking his humor seriously, if you will. Temple has a pleasing midrange voice that's able to imbue the pictures he paints with the sense of veracity that makes his songs come alive. "You Want to Wear That Ring" is a fine example of Temple at his best. He's giving advice to a buddy who's getting married, and while the tune suggests "I Fought the Law (And the Law Won)" the advice is heartfelt and unsentimental. Love he says "feels good except when it feels bad," but if you have love in your heart "you want to wear that ring." On "I Just Can't Quit Loving You" he lists off all the things he's given up, including smoking, drinking, and drinking out of the milk carton. It's a song any man in a long-term relationship can relate to, and again comes to the conclusion that love's worth the struggle. "Can't Drink Enough to Sing" tells the tale of a songwriter who can't perform, despite the encouragement of his girlfriend and a few shots. It's a telling portrait of the creative struggles many artists face. "The Pluto Blues" uses the demotion of Pluto from planet to huge rock as a metaphor for the changes in life people don't want to face up to. He also uses Gary Coleman, the child star who grew up to be a pauper because his parents spent his millions without his consent. A gambit like that can be risky, but Temple pulls it off with insight and compassion. The album closes with "On the Lonesome Road," a bluegrassy rock tune that channels Woody Guthrie to celebrate the ups and downs of a traveling musician. Producer Lloyd Maines keeps things simple with a straightforward country-rock sound that lets Temple's voice and his impressive songwriting shine.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/22/2008
  • Label: Thirty Tigers
  • UPC: 654165017825
  • Catalog Number: 650172
  • Sales rank: 219,895

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A reviewer

    This Texas-based singer-songwriter has released four albums over the past decade, with a five year work-and-school hiatus between 2002’s “Right Here and Now” and the local release of this disc back in 2007. Like many who travel within the self-contained universe that is Texas country music, he emerges into the national spotlight with a lot more depth and polish than listeners expect to hear in their first brush with an artist. But four albums into his career, Temple’s a memorable songwriter with a country-folk-rock sound that has the sort of sing-a-long middle-American earthiness of John Mellancamp’s hits and Steve Earle’s Guitar Town. Lloyd Maines’ production keeps Temple’s lyrics and voice as the central motor, but guitarist David Grissom is given space to add some hot-shot electric licks. ¶ The album opens with Temple’s clever consideration of matrimony, advising a querulous groom with frank humor about the yin and yang of married life. The pains of love are also essayed in “I Can’t Quit Loving You,” in which the protagonist enumerates all the bad habits he’s given up, save the one in the title. Bad love and love gone bad are the themes of “Red Wine and Tequila” and “Like We Still Care,” respectively the former is a bluesy tune that offers a bar-lit realization that some relationships are as ill-fitting as a bad combination of spirits, while the latter is a clear-eyed look at the chilly end of a failed relationship. Another couple’s ending is rendered in clever analogy as the carnage of a “Demolition Derby.” ¶ Temple can turn from clever to funny, yet still remain touching. He chronicles a stage-frightened amateur on “Can’t Drink Enough to Sing,” and laments the re-categorization of Pluto as a non-planet by way of Gary Coleman’s fall from stardom (“a trip from the top to rent-a-cop can make you feel insecure”). The album closes with two of its strongest songs. “Rivers Run From Many Waters” is a mid-tempo fiddle waltz (with some terrific electric guitar from David Grissom) that opens with the evocative couplet “My great grandfather was a rake and rambler / Good with the women but not a good gambler,” before working down the family tree to his grandfather, father and son. Closing the disc is the traveling musician hoe-down “On the Lonesome Road,” featuring some fine acoustic flat picking. This album is a real treat for anyone seeking honest country music with folk and rock sides, unaffected by both Nashville’s commercial intentions and alt.country’s anti-Nashville response. [©2008 redtunictroll at hotmail dot com]

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