1 Apr 2013

Temple - On the Steps of the Temple [Full length] (2012, Self-released)

My main problem with most progressive metal bands is that nowadays a lot of them take the djent route. Another thing is that many musicians mistake "progressive" for "putting a bunch of twiddle-twaddle bullshit together for no apparent reason other than to make it sound spacey and/or technical as fuck". Therefore it is nice to listen to a band such as Temple; A band that takes the technical elements out of progressive and merely focus on atmosphere.

To introduce the band, Temple is a two-man endeavour into the ethereal realms of progressive metal from Arizona in the United States. On their only release, the album "On the Steps of the Temple", the listener is forcefully embarked upon a journey through the almost cinematic soundscapes of the album's six songs. The term "song" is used loosely as the band is actually entirely instrumental, and consists of Ryan's thoughtful guitar, bass and scarce keyboard work accompanied by Rich's indulgent drumming.

On the Steps of the Temple features several influences from a myriad of genres, from the black metal-infused opening track "Mountain", to the almost symphonic post-rock track "Final Years", to the gloomy "The Mist that Shrouds the Peaks", which is entirely defined by its funeral-like tempo and disposition. The amount of variation on the album speaks of great care for the music the band performs, and Temple really are an entirely different breed of progressive than other acts such as Dream Theater, Meshuggah or Tool.

There aren't many things that subtract from the Temple equation. Their music is greatly varied, has good depth, has both long and shorter tracks, mesmerizing melodies and enthralling, atmospheric soundscapes. One of the things that I don't like about On the Steps of the Temple is the length, as the album is really long at about 52 minutes. I know it's not uncommon for progressive or atmospheric bands to have lengthy releases, and for the most part it works fine, but because it takes a little under an hour to listen to the entire album I rarely find time to listen to the album in its entirity in one sitting. However, I don't want this to be reflected too much on the album's overall score. Temple's music is captivating, well produced and well written. 8/10 guitars.

1. Mountain
2. Rising from the Abyss
3. Final Years
4. The Mist That Shrouds the Peaks
5. Avaritia
6. On the Steps of the Temple

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TEMPLE on Bandcamp

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