The Temperance Movement Bring the Groove to Los Angeles’ Bootleg Theater
There are times when you're lucky enough to catch a band early in their career at an intimate venue and it's clear that bigger things lie ahead. Such was the case Wednesday night in Los Angeles as fans packed into the Bootleg Theater to catch The Temperance Movement, the U.K. upstarts currently climbing the charts with their single "Take It Back."
Right out of the gate, the band showed a certain swagger that let you know this was going to be a show where trying to deny the groove was futile. They opened with "Modern Massacre," a bluesy rocker with an undeniable beat from drummer Damon Wilson and a live wire performance from frontman Phil Campbell. And when we say live wire, that may be an understatement. The vocalist's go-switch was on from the moment he hit the venue, noticeably rocking along and dancing to the music of the night's opening act before The Temperance Movement got off to their own electrifying start.
"Midnight Black" and "Battle Lines" followed, with the energy in the room rising with each track. Killer guitar licks from Paul Sayer and Luke Potashnick kept the crowd rocking along, while Campbell was a blur of limbs, strutting about with showmanship and energy that never waned throughout the set.
One thing is certain. The band's roots lie in kick ass, bluesy hard rock. At times, you could feel as though the group was ready to fill the void left by The Black Crowes. Other times, you might think Campbell was a descendant of Brian Johnson or Paul Rodgers. But the band puts their own stamp on the music and it works very well live.
Highlights include the catchy "Be Lucky," the slow burn-turned-all-out jam of "Smouldering," the opening guitar play between Sayer and Potashnick on "Only Friend" and the take no prisoners solos of Sayer and bassist Nick Fyffe on the set closer "Take It Back." After "Take It Back," the band returned for the encore,"Serenity."
One other cool thing about the intimate nature of this show was the performance of "Chinese Lanterns," a track that found all five members coming to the front of the stage and for three-quarters of the song they played without microphones. Campbell sang to the back of the room with no need for amplification, even while audience members clapped along. Meanwhile, the other four members chimed in with perfect harmonies before returning to their instruments to finish out the song.
The Temperance Movement are off to a solid start in the States and are primed to be one of those word-of-mouth breakout bands. So get out to a show if they play near you and say you saw them at this early stage of their career. Their tour dates can be found here. Check out our gallery from the Los Angeles Bootleg Theater show below.
The Temperance Movement at Los Angeles' Bootleg Theater