I saw Temple 8 last night at the Phantasy in Lakewood, Oh. They were one of four bands on the bill and played third. The first two bands were tearing it up but they had some serious meter problems, their stage amps were too loud and you couldn't even begin to hear the vocals. I could see the bass players playing a ton of notes but I actually couldn't hear one note they were playing. Whenever I hear this in bands, to me, it just means no one is playing in time with each other. After the first two bands played, I was really thinking and hoping Temple 8 would come out and be massively better in order for me to actually like the band. I am pleased to say they were massively better and there was no comparison. Temple's guitarist first off knows how to set the level of his amp where he gave an opportunity for the sound man to actually have some control of the way the mix was coming out of the mains. When Temple was playing, I could only hear the guitar out of the mains and in my opinion, that's the way it should be. ( the guitar amps the first two bands were way too loud on stage the whole time. I would think they should know better.) temple 8 knows how to play softer when the singing starts and that results in a more dynamic sounding and interesting band. Temple 8 knows how to write some songs too and the drummer and bass player were fabulous. I could hear every note the bass player played and with great tone. The guitarist, Kurt Tischer, doesn't need to play a million notes a second (boy do I usually dislike that) in a guitar solo and actually writes his solos to fit the song. The different tones he used were all too cool. Temple 8 has a trick up their sleeve as they play along with a synth track on some of their songs and that alone added depth and variety to their overall sound. Temple 8 is a good prog rock band that knows how to write good tunes so why aren't they on the Rock on the Range bill this summer in Columbus?
Temple 8 gets another great review. This time in Skope Magazine.
My Fave: For those of you know what I like—or think you do, I’m going to surprise you. My fave this month is he rock/metal band, Temple 8, from Cleveland. I was just taken with the versatility and technical skills of this band. They dip into musical styles and instrumentation all across the board. Their “Goodbye 42” is a rich composition that feels like a movie soundtrack, and “Hope” begins as a thoughtful guitar solo and builds to a lovely piano/guitar/drums marriage. Then, the band’s “Enter the Temple” combines the best of rock with metal and electronics into this driving extravaganza that could be played with a dozen performers and not just three or four. The brainchild of multi-instrumentalist Kurt Tischer, Temple 8 has both paradox and simplicity at its core. It is both grand and restrained. Their songs, as you might expect, lean to non-mainstream politics without drifting into anarchy and try to point listeners toward a spiritual awakening. This is a breath of fresh air in this genre. Temple 8 has one CD out, Enter the Temple, that they did in 2003. They are way overdue for putting out another, but currently have been so busy touring the country and even made a foray into England last month. Check them out at www.temple8.net.
Der instrumentale Opener - eine Art Ouvertüre - hat ordentlich Druck und stimmt auf Rush-orientierten Prog-Metal ein, auch gesanglich. Die folgenden drei Songs bieten recht unterschiedliche Spielarten dieses Sounds. „Ideas of the Mind“ mit Schepperrhythmus und streckenweise verzerrtem Sprechgesang klingt trotz etwas eingängiger Gitarre interessant. Das gefällige „Confessions of an old Soul Pt. II“ steht für die ruhige Variante. Die Keyboards erinnern ein wenig an Genesis. „Turn left“ schließlich ist ein nett gemachter Reggae, der auch gut ins Ohr geht. Überhaupt klingen die Melodien ganz angenehm, ohne aber mainstreamig zu wirken.
Ab „At the Summit“ tritt dann leider ein Gewöhnungseffekt ein. Bei den nun noch folgenden Songs denkt man, dass man sie doch schon sehr ähnlich auf diesem Album gehört hat bzw. sie erreichen nicht mehr die Substanz der ersten Hälfte. „The Big Picture“ erhält durch den Einsatz einer Sitar immerhin eine spezielle Note. “Confessions of an old soul” wird zum Ende hin noch einmal mit anderem Text wiederholt. Warum? Natürlich um den Konzeptcharakter des Albums zu unterstreichen. Nur schafft dies keine neue Facette der Musik wie dies bei den ersten Stücken der Fall war. Die ambitionierten Texte drehen sich um den Tod bzw. ein Leben nach dem Tod.
Rush-Fans sollten durchaus mal ein Ohr riskieren.
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