Looking like a West Coast psych band, Temples bear all the hallmarks of cosmic travellers. There's the band name, for starters, there are track titles that sound like JG Ballard novels (Prisms, The Golden Throne, Sun Structures) and there's the fact that they take incense sticks on the road with them. But if all of the above suggests Temples are backwards-looking, think again. The Kettering four-piece's music is a mix of scuzzy glam stomp, dreamy, 12-string-drenched folk-rock, droning psych and more – all given a 2013 spin. Retro is a dirty word.
"Psychedelic music has always been forward thinking," says bassist Tom Warmsley, who founded Temples with singer/guitarist James Bagshaw in the summer of 2012. "It's so easy to fall into that kind of revival band thing, but our aim is to reference these things and bring something completely new to it. A song like Sun Structures talks about something contemporary using old imagery and eastern religion. It isn't a fictional work that people won't be able to find anything in. And the fidelity of the sound alone says we're doing something that couldn't really be done before."
FEVER THE GHOST
In their very brief existence, Fever The Ghost have already made quite an impression with their uncanny, spectacular live performances, quickly becoming the one band on the tip of everyone’s tongues within LA’s Silverlake/Echo Park scene. While Fever The Ghost’s grandiose rush on the senses dependably transports audiences into their strange universe, what’s even more remarkable is how fully-formed their sophisticated sound arrives, cleverly weaving addictive hooks into their forward-thinking psych-pop pastiche. Fever The Ghost’s songs have that rare quality where you can go home humming them after hearing the band live just once with melodies that linger in the mind.
On their adventurous debut EP Crab In Honey, Fever The Ghost not only delivers on that promise but also ups the ante on this expertly-crafted collection of interstellar pop with surprises lurking around every corner. Clocking in just under 20 minutes, Crab in Honey manages to pack in the ideas covering a wide range of sonic terrain, while never drifting too far from their melodic center. Easy to get into with inviting hooks, Crab In Honey grows more complex and deep with each successive listen.
A tight shuffling groove patiently pushes along the rocking skyward opener “Calico” as singer/guitarist Casper delivers his vocal with a catchy, yet understated cool. Riding a tasteful disco strut, “Source” makes the most of the linear structure with bouncy verses, deceivingly complex synth-work, and a very sticky chorus. The EP’s second half haunts on the darker yet dreamy title track “Crab In Honey” and the ethereal EP closer “We’ll Never Know The Place” introduces a change of instrumentation and breathtaking vocal arrangements to keep us guessing, leaving us eager to hear what comes next. Mastered by Bob Ludwig (David Bowie, Nirvana, Radiohead), Crab In Honey EP is out now on Complicated Game.
Chatham Rise are a Psych/Shoegaze/Space Rock band from Minneapolis. Chatham Rise s/t LP was released in April of 2013 and received positive critical acclaim, making some 2013 toplists and featuring guest sitar from former Brian Jonestown Massacre/Warlocks member Jeff Levitz on "Gone". Chatham Rise were 2014 Official SXSW Official Artists and performed at Austin Psych Fest's 2014 Levitation Showcase with Temples, The Black Lips, GOASTT (Sean Lennon), Blouse, No Joy and more... The band are slated to release a split LP yet this spring with London band Thelightshines enititled "We Are The Sun", with Chatham Rise tracks mixed by Mark Gardener of recently reunited shoegaze legends RIDE.
DJ Jake Rudh