Style : Rock – Dave Matthews meets Farpoint
Rating : 3.75 / 5
Summary : A very good debut from a young band that deserves recognition – and there are good reasons they should be watched
The 8 songs on Tempus’s Lie Like We Do have simple but memorable melodies. Good songwriting is their biggest strength, and these 36 minutes of head nodding folk-rock are a good listen and a strong first effort There was an inaugural EP, but his is the first full album from the New Jersey rockers and given the newness of the band, the youth of its members, and the overall quality of Lie Like We Do, it will be worth your while to keep an eye on this act.
Tempus claims influences from the Dave Matthews Band, Yes, and Rush. There’s not much Yes or Rush in their music, but if you can imagine a mix of Dave Matthews and Farpoint you’ll have a good idea of Tempus’s sound. The tracks are between 3 and 6 minutes long, and range from simple acoustic folk rock through to a richer, more progressive fusion style. The sound on this album is defined by the acoustic guitar and the vocals , but the occasional introduction of keyboards, violin, saxophone and cello add a welcome texture. The singing has a smooth, velvet-underground tone – a mature and soothing sound.
The standout track is “Weak By Choice”. It is heavier than most of the other songs, yet the elegant piano passages that weave their way through the whole piece are simple, melodic and engaging. There is a heavy bass line, an interesting syncopated rhythm and a jazzy guitar sound. Yet the singing and the backing vocals are consistent and provide effective cohesion.
So why should they be watched? Well – the band members of Tempus were just 17 when they wrote and recorded most of the music on this album. You’d never know that by listening to their debut album - it is raw and underproduced, but it is also optimistic, energetic, unconventional, and just a plain good listen. In addition, Tempus has recruited a talented, fulltime keyboardist and a new bassist. Their next album Keep Burning is already in the works with four tracks laid down, and we can expect more of those Yes and Rush influences.