After a ram-packed raucous set from support act The Merrylees, Midlands marvels Temples had a lot to live up to as they graced the intimate King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut.
Hotly tipped by some as the band of the year back in January, it’s hard to believe these psych rockers have only been around since 2012. Especially when frontman James Bagshaw struts onto the stage as a seasoned showman, with his fabulous curly hair, trademark glittered cheeks, fur-lapelled leather jacket and sparkly vest peeking out underneath. Clearly a born performer, he exuded all the confidence and swagger you’d typically find in someone who’s been doing this sort of thing for a decade, not a year. This, along with the strength of their songs, is why Temples have attracted such a following.
They opened with the stonking Sun Structures, with Bagshaw sounding every inch like he looked: from another era. The psychedelic instrumental sections mixed with the vocal harmonies bring a new and fresh twist to psych-rock. Not particularly like Kasabian, though that is no doubt who they’d be compared to in today’s scene in terms of success, they’re far less offensive in sound and have far more to offer vocally – especially live.
After flying through Prisms and Ankh, Bagshaw made a joke about the band only playing b-sides, before thundering into Colours To Life, an actual single, released back In June. Mid-tempo, mysterious and altogether dreamy, it still provoked a great crowd reaction, with many singing along. This led into the band “taking it down a bit” to showcase Bagshaw’s falsetto vocals – though special mention does have to go to Adam Smith, flitting so swiftly between keys and guitar all night.
For a band who’ve only released a few singles (and b-sides) it did beg the question of how Temples could fill a whole headline set at King Tut’s. Though no sooner had the thought entered the head of gig-goers, had Bagshaw quickly introduced song The Guesser, which he noted was from their debut album, not due for release until the new year.
Finishing in spectacular style with brand new single Keep In The Dark crashing into first release Shelter Song, Temples ensured they ended the night on a high, and fans went home pleased despite a short set with no encore. Already flawless live after only a year of gigging, Temples are a band to look out for on the festival circuit – and no doubt charts – next year.