The Temples - “Hot Motion” Album Review
Psychedelic pop group the Temples are back with their third studio album “Hot Motion.” Attempting to solidify its sound, the group experiments with a variety of styles, all seemingly revolving around a noticeable endeavor to invoke fluidity.
Often likened to iconic bands such as the Doors and the Beatles, the Temples are best known for their alternative take on the classic kaleidoscopic rock genre of yesteryear. Pulling in influences from the music provided by their parents’ record collection, the Temples frequently attempt to pay tribute to the music they grew to love as children. Gradually, the group has garnered a name for itself and has steadily carved its own spot in the indie-pop mainstream. Branching out even further into their nostalgic sound, the Temples attempt once again to perfect their unique experimental aesthetic.
Opening with the hooking “Hot Motion,” the Temples explode onto the record with an all-out rock presentation. Fluctuating between blistering guitars and simmering vocals, the Temples explore a variety of volatile tones and vintage melodies.
The record maintains its traction with the hallucinogenic “You’re Either on Something,” which blasts the listener with an immersive stream of hypnotic grooves. Implementing a mesmerizing chorus alongside a surge of captivating beats, the Temples send the listener on what feels like a well-choreographed contact high.
The album then moves to the exuberant “Holy Horses,” which incorporates a noteworthy galloping structure and proves once again how successful the Temples are at echoing the music of their influences.
“Hot Motion” then hits a sudden drop off in immersion with the forced “The Howl.” Seemingly trying to generate some sort of inspiring anthem feel, all of the track’s attempts to hook the listener utterly fail. Instead of raising the energy of the album, “The Howl” actually ends up siphoning much of the record’s spirit into an aimless attempt at sparking a sense of passion in the listener.
Thankfully, the album then makes a complete recovery with the dynamic “Context.” Infectiously electrifying, the track effectively restores the momentum of the album with its elastic base and gripping flow.
It’s clear that “Hot Motion” is definitely a front-loaded album, as the rest of the record begins to bleed together. While not at all filled with throwaway tracks, there is a noticeable disparity in quality between the record’s singles and the overall track listing. The Temples experiment with their own fair share of interesting soundscapes on the latter half of the record, but many of the tracks lack proper definition and are regretfully pretty underwhelming. Even the conclusion of “Hot Motion” is quite lackluster, and, although noticeably cohesive, there is very little to offer listeners in order to motivate them to revisit the album’s final moments.
With that being said, the Temples are, in their own right, very effective at reviving the retro sounds of the 1960s and 1970s with their own special spin. The group proves on “Hot Motion” that they have a substantial amount of potential and a keen ability to craft genre-defying music. Several tracks on the record are effective at capturing the listener, and the group’s commitment to such an underappreciated category of rock is absolutely exciting. Looking towards the future, the Temples should attempt to strengthen the bodywork of their albums so that entire projects can shine just as much as the group’s carefully coordinated hit tracks.
Reviewer’s Favorite Song: “Hot Motion” and “You’re Either on Something”
Reviewer’s Least Favorite Song: “The Howl”
Scott Perdue is a junior majoring in secondary education. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.