Wednesday, September 24 in San Francisco, The Fillmore welcomed Fever The Ghost, Wampire, and Temples to its stage. The crowd that night was an eclectic mix, comprised of teens headbanging, twenty-somethings travelling in packs, and an older crowd that was most likely there out of love for the venue.
During the first half hour of the evening, Fever The Ghost delivered what would be the most theatrical performance of the evening to a crowd of about fifty early birds. Considering the band’s frequent use of otherworldly prerecorded hooks and intros, lead singer/guitarist Casper Indrizzo’s twitchy dancing and tendency to find himself kneeling on the ground were not surprising. It only seemed out of place due to the small, slowly growing crowd at that point in the evening. However, Fever The Ghost still got some heads bobbing and likely recruited a few fans in their short set, “A Parliament of Owls Determine the F” being a personal favourite.
Wampire’s hour was a charismatic showcasing of both old, new, and unreleased material. Duo Rocky Tinder and Eric Phipps maintained a confident cool on stage, joking between songs and saving the intensity for the final song in their set, which they played to a nearly full room. “Wizard Staff” from their upcoming album Bazaar was a highlight of the night.
While Temples have publically rejected the label of a “revival band”, they certainly looked the part Wednesday night when they hit the stage. From their clothes to their hair and instruments, this band looks like they were plucked out of the 1960’s. This does not, however, speak to the currency of their sound. Temples gave an unpretentious, crowd-pleasing performance from start to finish, and demonstrated that their brand of psychedelic rock not only has a sizeable audience, but also that that audience is young, relatively mainstream and vibrant.
Opening with “Sun Structures” was a popular choice, to say the least, and confirmed that the crowd was here for them. Two songs into their set, bouncing heads and flailing arms were accompanied by waitresses begging patrons to “please put that out, I don’t care if it’s not a cigarette”, and the tone for the night was set to the soaring vocals and upbeat guitar riffs of “A Question Isn’t Answered.”
On a whole, Temples’ performance went down easy in the best way. A laid-back and to-the-point set was the best thing they could have done for their special brand of embellished psych-rock. A beautiful, historical venue and some brightly colored lights was all this group needed to let their impressive musicianship, unique percussive accompaniment, and haunting vocals shine through.
Article by Sayre Sherill