It doesn’t take too long with Volcano to realise that, while all the things that made the band special the first time around remain intact, a noticeable evolution has taken place. It’s there from the outset: the beefed-up beats of Certainty reveal an expanded sonic firmament, one in which bright synth hooks and insistent choruses circle around each other over chord sequences that strike just the right balance between nice and queasy. “If there’s a sense of scale,” says lead singer James Bagshaw, “It was really just a result of implementing a load of things that we didn’t know about the first time around.” Co-founding member and bassist Thomas Walmsley describes a record in which “we discovered a lot as we went along, and the excitement at having done so radiates."
One thing you do notice is that it’s harder to spot the influences this time around. It would be disingenuous to evade the psych-pop tag, for sure, but mystical language has been supplanted by something a more direct – and while those influences are still there, it’s no longer possible to pick them out. They’ve been broken down and blended together – fossilised into a single source of creative fuel, so that what you can hear this time around, sounds like nothing so much as Temples. This is the sound of a band squaring up to their potential.
Temples released their debut album, Sun Structures, in February 2014. Bagging the prestigious top spot in Rough Trade Shops Albums of the Year list, Sun Structures also charted in eighteen countries, including a top-10 spot in the UK, and became the year’s biggest-selling vinyl album in independent British record shops, with early pressings of first single Shelter Song changing hands on Discogs for up to £150.