Temple Grove - 'Ferro City Limits' EP Review
1. Cocoa Canine
2. Solid Seven
3. Something Else (Is In Here With Us)
4. N. Spectre Pt 1 - The Shillelagh
I suppose I should start this review by stating that two of the five members of the band write for 3 Songs & Out and as well as being good friends, I was also responsible for helping photograph the promo photos for the band. So you'd be forgiven for thinking that I would be approaching this review with a level of bias. But I have always made a point of letting affiliations take a step back and allow the music to do the talking, no matter where that may take myself and my opinion.
Thankfully Temple Grove are the breathe of fresh air my music collection has been missing for a while now. (And I won't be losing two writers because of my harsh words)
As I sit here and take in the four track EP I find myself reflecting on the 'major' label releases of the past few months and I can't help but think that now more than ever, is the time for these new bands to step up and kick a few of the major league bands off their thrones. I think of the new albums from the likes of 30 Seconds To Mars, Shinedown, Deaf Havana and Bullet For My Valentine to name just a few and reflect on how hollow their releases made me feel and yes I know they're different genres to that of Temple Grove but you get the idea.
The EP kicks off with 'Cocoa Canine' and instantly this EP has hit the ground running. Lead single material? yes! Anthem? totally! I am after only a few listens, finding myself singing along and know that as and when the EP launch show takes place, Temple Grove will find their lyrics being sung back at them with this one. Lead singer Chris shows off his impressive range, shifting between clean and harsh vocals with ease. If all this wasn't enough it even has a gang vocals chant within. (I love gang vocals!)
Next up we have 'Solid Seven' offering up the same instant wave of melodic brutality of 'Cocoa Canine' it also builds on the promise of track one and adds into the mix an almost ethereal middle section with more gang vocals for good measure (Did I mention I fucking love gang vocals?!). I also can't help but hear a hint of The Story So Far here, which is a comparison I didn't think I would make but it's there.
From here we arrive at 'Something Else (Is In Here With Us)' that rewards my ears with a sexy little riff that I just can't get enough of. Intricate drumming and more of Chris's beautiful vocals. Much like 'Solid Seven' before it there again is the ethereal breakdown, that offers the listener a moment of respite before hitting you in the face again for the big finish.
And finally 'N. Spectre Pt 1 - The Shillelagh' probably the heaviest track on the EP and sadly the last. Chris's vocals are far more aggressive on this one and here is where I can hear Alexisonfire (a band that they cite as an influence) Again we have those sexy riffs, driving drums and hefty bass guiding the melody throughout. And as quickly as that we are done and I am clicking the repeat button.
Four songs is simply not enough for me. I have been aware of Temple Grove for a while now and have waited patiently for the grand reveal and it was certainly worth the wait, not that I ever doubted it would be. Throughout I can hear the bands influences of August Burns Red, Alexisonfire and Four Year Strong and the band wear these influences on their sleeves, all the while never being a pale imitation, or just some glorified tribute but instead have built upon the structure of those bands before them and have found their own sound and style within.
The local scene is constantly evolving and there are waves of bands ready to step up and push for those greater heights and despite being fresh out of the gate I think the scenes new kings have arrived.
Temple Grove are you ready to take the crown?
Bandcamp - https://templegroveuk.bandcamp.com/releases
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/templegroveuk/
Review - Sean Friswell