Playing a game of “spot the influences” is pretty easy when it comes to Australia’s the Temper Trap. U2-like guitar? Check. Vocal dexterity a la Prince with a dash of Thom Yorke falsetto? Check. Big arena sound circa early Muse? Double-check (but without the bombast that has overwhelmed that band). And yet you’d have to be a soulless zombie not to feel the passion that comes through, particularly in Dougy Mandagi’s soaring vocals.
The band made it’s first ever trip to Indianapolis Tuesday night, delivering everything you’d expect from a big arena rock show but in the cozy confines of Deluxe. The band established the intense vibe immediately with propulsive opener London’s Burning from their newest, self-titled, record. Single Need Your Love followed, and from there it was just a matter of riding the emotional wave. Occasionally, as in Trembling Hands, the melodrama threatened to overwhelm. Still, it’s hard to fault a band that pours so much emotion and sincerity into their music.
Miracle, with it’s deep insistent bass groove, and the shuffling This Isn’t Happiness were the songs of the night, though it’s hard to deny the impossibly catchy Fader. By the time the encore wrapped with the band’s most well known song, the powerful Sweet Disposition, the Deluxe crowd had been treated to 75 minutes of soul-stirring music. If that’s not the point of a live show, I don’t know what is.
Temper Trap Set List:
Need Your Love
The Sea is Calling
This Isn’t Happiness
Science of Fear
As for Wild Belle — holy hell were they good! You’ll be hard pressed to find much about them online but that’s going to change soon — as in February when their first album drops. Think a darker, jazzier Cardigans with an Afro-Caribbean dance edge, as well as some elements of the buzzy Givers. Lead singer Natalie Bergman is a minx with some serious vocal chops, and the band complements her sultry delivery well. Keep your eyes peeled.