Temple Canyon is a newish local rock band fronted by the powerful voice and guitar of Mariko Ruhle. They refer to themselves as “Nostalgic Seattle Rock,” but – at least on their newly-released EP Thank You for Not Caring – the nostalgia that infuses their music is of a more recent vintage than your usual Ballard stompin’, clappin’, longhaired, bearded fare. From the big drums to the strummy/stabby guitar interplay to the woozy keyboard lines, it’s hard not to hear some of the best elements of ’80s alternative pop at play here. Mariko’s vocals sound great in mellow mode, especially playing back-and-forth with guest vocalist Noble Monyei, and even better when she kicks into high gear, with a few moments that would make you swear Chrissie Hynde snuck into the studio for a second. They take the song some interesting places, too, slowing down to a rubato breakdown in the middle that leaves you a little stranded before bringing you back to the hook with a hug and a few handclaps for good measure. Welcome to Ball of Wax, Temple Canyon! Looking forward to hearing more in the near future.
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