(2010, self released)
RIYL = Tim Hecker, The Field, Belong
I’m not much for EPs. Maybe you’ve noticed, all one bajillion of you who have sent me your debut EPs without a response. Forgive me, really. I don’t know what stops me from being able to commit myself to downloading and listening to something of that length. It should be easier right? (Don’t give up, send me your full lengths.) Yet, I do take exception for some. Enter Mark Templeton’s Ballads. While I genuinely loved his collaboration with aA. Munson on Acre Loss, I think I forced myself to enjoy his sophomore album, Inland. It wasn’t bad by any means, but not near as good as Standing On A Hummingbird either. It almost kept me from immersing myself in his latest EP. However, Ballads marks a return to his previously achieved, outstanding form. The concept for Ballads is a brief, but rich suite of tracks derived from the one-and-only Lionel Richie. The opening track, “February 23rd,” is quick to find the Richie’s single, “Hello,” bleeding through the guitars and static. It’s a plunderphonic dream that you never knew you had and now, in its earshot, can’t help but slip away into again and again. The closer, "Drowning in Memories," thickens things up a bit and provides ample evidence of the man's expertise in sound collage. Looks like Mr. Templeton is back on top and Ballads definitely has me interested in what’s coming next from the textured Canadian soundsmith.
Mark Templeton - "Fabruary 23rd"
Mark Templeton's website