Review: The Temple Sessions

If ever there were proof that art and finance can mix it can be found in the songs of Andrew Montlake.

A Neil Diamond of his day, Montlake sings of romance and casual liaisons. Unlike many of today’s musicians, Montlake plays his own instruments and the gentle strumming on the guitar conjures up a summery mood that complements the widely amorous lyrics that explore melancholy memories and “velvet starlight”.

In Personal Touch (no relation to the mortgage network) Montlake reveals a tender side that is surely irresistible to many women. Forget a customer-focussed approach to selling mortgages, Montlake admits he believes in romance and begs his love interest to open up and let him into her dreams. How could any lady resist?

One Winter’s Night is infinitely sad. In it, Montlake retells the dreams of an unknown woman who talks over an of days long gone, fairy tales and a prince who swept her off her feet. At times both mysterious and nostalgic, Montlake sings of “dreams that turned to rust, promises that dried to dust”.

He relishes a carefree approach to life in the final track, Casual Affair. With a light-hearted sampling of catchphrases from Austin Powers, Montlake is obviously singing of a time long gone, when a casual affair was a matter of when rather than if.

With a funky backbeat harking back to the late 1980s, Montlake sings: “We made love in the bedroom, we made love on the stairs, we made love in the kitchen, we made love everywhere.”

His judgement of the meaningless nature of casual affairs is admirable but this reviewer has just one remark left to make – oh behave!