temple-Leicester’s Temple of Lies have hitched up their wagons and headed west – figuratively at least. What this quartet offer is stoner/desert rock with a metal edge.  It may be the Midlands connection but I get a bit of a Wolfsbane vibe amid the Clutch and Orange Goblin flavours.

This is very rough around the edges I am not sure if it the files I have been sent but Si Shaws vocals sound pretty thin in the mix with many words clipping and frankly hurting my ears. It doesn’t sound mixed correctly which doesn’t bode well.

This aside what the guys offer is fast paced raspy desert rawk n roll. Opener “Rope” doesn’t do a lot for me, there are competent riffs but it is the same old same old. The desert is packed full of bands wanting to join in the fuzzed out jamboree and it takes a lot to be noticed.

“Bats” which follows is much better. A great meaty riff and a real swagger this reminds me of Atomic Bitchwax and my foot is a tapping and my head a shaking. Suddenly Mr Shaw goes all James Hetfield and starts intoning that he “Can’t get enough”. This passage of vocals, as short as it is really breaks up the song for me and my groove is gone.

“Crystal” that follows ramps up the metal quotient in a rant against the product Walter and Jessie peddled on our small screens. They serve up some great groove metal here and it works really well. The aforementioned Wolfsbane grease metal groove is evident but with some big ballsy riffs to ramp things up.   Temple of Lies add a little bit of Alice In Chains here and there throughout the album, most notably in From Sand and  Pure Alcohol .

Fire In the Hole is a real mess though. Like Burning Red era Machine Head or One Minute Silence but with some truly bizarre “demonic” voices which just ruin whatever vibe was trying to be created.  888 which follows adds groove metal but sounds very dated.  The gang vocals sound out of place with the opening few tracks and the desert mirage is lost in a mire of mishmash hybrids.

Pigbitch wipes out the memory of the last couple of tracks with a pedal to the metal stoner riff and more of the swagger heard previously.  MoM bringing up the rear evokes Stone Temple Pilots in parts and these segments really suit Shaws vocals. This is a band that shows promise but appear to be conflicted as to what their identity is. There is not a lot of originality here and at times it truly is messy but there is enough to pique my interest if and when I see their name on a gig poster or CD rack in the future.

(4.5/10 Matt Mason)