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Temples On Mars offer up a debut album by the same name that shows a band already comfortable in their own shoes. The quality of writing, performance and recording all alight for an extremely strong debut complete with all the twists and turns an alternative rocker could ever ask for.
The album starts with a short introduction and the enthusiastic ‘Gods and Kings’ but it’s on the third track ‘Afraid of Living’ that it really starts to grab you. The original way that the guitars and drums roll on a riff while the vocals soar gently over the top is fascinating and, perhaps more importantly, shows an emphasis on original approach.
Aside from the introduction, every track pushes four minutes and one, ‘Dining With The Devil’, clears eight. Tempo markings overall are on the moderate side so songs may feel extensive but never overstretched. Progressive elements pop up here and there like palette cleansers with the verse of ‘Black Mirror’ in particular leaving a notable impression. Overall it’s got the hallmarks of a well-structured album.
There’s variety to spare here. For the angry but anthemic there are ‘So In Love With Your Own Drug’ and ‘Death In The Afternoon’. For a more direct approach, ‘Gods And Kings’ or ‘When Gods Collide’. And for those wanting the twisted and progressive the latter parts of the album all suffice with ‘Dining With The Devil’ sitting as the crown jewel.
Temples on Mars prove themselves fully capable of traversing the line between hard rock and accessibility. When jangling ambient guitar verses bloom in a dreamy haze before metamorphosing into full-on angry distorted chorus there’s always a sense of aforethought that’s sure to please fans of the alternative rock scene, from a bit of Tool to Muse.
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Listen to “Temples on Mars” below.