Live Review: Desert Daze Caravan at Crystal Ballroom

Words and Photography: Liz Garcia

Temples, Night Beats, and Deap Vally, along with supporting acts JJUUJJUU and Froth, stopped at the Crystal Ballroom on Friday to play a truly killer show on the second night of their Desert Daze Caravan tour.

The night opened with JJUUJJUU. The Los Angeles group graced the crowd with their neo psychedelic-ness and distorted guitars. Buzzing static lingered in the air even as they had left the stage.

Next up was Froth, also from L.A. The group was extra excited to be playing the show on the day of the release of their new album Outside (briefly). They played a set of new and old songs, including “Contact” and “Passing Thing.” Although Froth was an opener, they took the stage with an effortlessly cool attitude and a side of ultra reverb. Combined with the kaleidoscopic backdrop screen art, you found yourself lost into Froth’s lazily alluring performance.

All woman duo, Deap Vally, followed up, taking to the stage barefoot and ready to go. The audience lost it as Lindsey Troy and Julie Edwards unapologetically howled into the microphones: “I don’t wanna be a reflection / I’m so bored with this rejection / I don’t wanna be a reflection / I don’t need your direction” during “Smile More,” off their latest album Femejism. The crowd took to stomping and clapping along as Deap Vally played “Walk of Shame.” The duo finished casting the spell on the audience as they closed their set with one of their new hits “Royal Jelly.” The women unleashed power and raw energy. They played a truly bewitching show.

Next on was Seattle band Night Beats. The psych garage rock trio played several songs off Who Sold My Generation. The audience especially enjoyed “Power Child,” a bluesy, bass-driven tune.

Finally it was time for Temples. The Desert Daze Caravan headliners walked up on stage looking overwhelmingly fashionable and mesmerizingly bold as ever. Frontman James Bagshaw was dressed in shimmering, emerald velvet. As strikingly charismatic as the band is, they were just as down to earth, thanking the audience of Portlanders multiple times throughout the show, with their charming English accents, while at the same time making girls in the crowd swoon.  Temples played a set of familiar songs from Sun Structures, as well as a string of new tunes off their soon to be released album, Volcano.  The UK four piece opened with a new beaming track off the new album. The moment the crowd had been waiting for finally came when the band played one of their new singles, “Certainty.” Lights blaring and the exhilarating melody of keyboardist Adam Smith’s bright synth circulating in the air, the crowd lost themselves for a moment. Temples played fan favorite, “Shelter Song,” off their debut album. Before the electric night came to a close, the group of Englishmen played their latest single, “Strange or Be Forgotten,” which became the anthem of the night. All throughout the crowd you could see and hear audience members singing and dancing along, even after the four walked off stage, bringing the night to a close. Temples’ invigorating performance left the crowd wanting more but surely pleased fans waiting anxiously for their new album, releasing March 3 via Fat Possum.


Deap Vally



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