Temples – Sun Structures

written by: February 6, 2014
Album-art-for-Sun-Structures-by-Temples Release Date: February 11, 2014


Temples couldn’t have picked a better time to release its debut LP, Sun Structures.

While it shares elements of beloved modern psychedelic rock bands like Tame Impala and MGMT, it also draws enormous influence from The Beatles, who are bound to be in the forefront of music fan’s minds worldwide as we come up on the 50th anniversary of Beatlemania.

Even though it draws from old-school influences, Temples sounds less like a blast from the past than the past projected into some mystifying, surreal, dream-like future. The charming elements of psychedelia  are still there: the hazy, high-pitched vocals and captivating instrumentals, the bizarre lyrics and clunky, distorted drums.

But the quartet adds an unending creative drive, bringing new elements to a relatively ancient genre. Whether it’s the exhaustive use of sounds and effects or supreme knack for making every song unique, Temples channels the energy of a number of influences to make one monster of a record.

Starting with the band’s breakthrough 2012 single “Shelter Song,” Sun Structures is immediately hypnotizing and engaging, never losing steam as it rattles and shakes through a psychedelic haze.

“Shelter Song” is a perfect way to introduce Temples, epitomizing all of its signature elements.

Singer and guitarist James Bagshaw’s voice is as warm and welcoming as ever, the recurring simple riff is both catchy and fun, and of course, the overall fuzziness ties the mix together with a shabby, vintage feel.

Temples’ other three singles are equally memorable, but there is much more to the debut than anyone could have predicted. The suave, melodic “The Guesser” jumps out as one of Temples’ best songs to date, along with the unforgettable chorus in “Test of Time,” which is undoubtedly the catchiest moment on the record.

It doesn’t stop here. Every track is memorable and sets itself apart in some way. Temples’ ability to do whatever the hell it wants is evident, especially in the invigorating “Move With The Season,” which could easily be the best song on the record. The group incorporates new influences into the song, namely Fleet Foxes, to make a groovy, fuzz-folk hybrid that shows each member’s skills.

But the insanity can’t go on forever. Slowing to an eerie, classical Spanish-esque hum, Sun Structures closes on its only soft number. In “Fragment’s Light,” Bagshaw sings sweetly and plucks alongside an overwhelming celestial soundscape, taking the music farther out into space than it already was. It’s a surprising change of pace, but a welcome one. Once it’s over, all there is left to do is play the album on repeat for the rest of eternity.

Trust the praise this band has gotten, not only here, but from countless others. If Johnny Marr and Noel Gallagher claim you’re the best new band in Britain, you’ve got to be doing something right.

Temples – Sun Structures tracklist:

  1. “Shelter Song”
  2. “Sun Structures”
  3. “The Golden Throne”
  4. “Keep In The Dark”
  5. “Mesmerise”
  6. “Move With The Season”
  7. “Colours To Life”
  8. “A Question Isn’t Answered”
  9. “The Guesser”
  10. “Test of Time”
  11. “Sand Dance”
  12. “Fragment’s Light”