UofMixtape: Dive deep into Tame Impala
I was a passive fan of Tame Impala before Currents became my freshman-year obsession. Afterward I dove deep into Lonerism and InnerSpeaker with an eagerness to know him (although others perform songs with Kevin Parker live, he creates all of the music that is released under the name Tame Impala) better. While neither of them measured up to the mastery of Currents, I found a host of songs that I loved.
“Lucidity” is my favorite song off of InnerSpeaker. Kevin Parker sounds a hell of a lot like John Lennon, and the entire song sounds like a synthy over-produced Beatles song but that’s what I love about it. Kevin begs “Lucidity come back to me” through the chorus of the song. “Solitude is Bliss” eases the audience into the song with a crescendo of bouncy guitar riffs, while “It is Not Meant To Be” places an unusual amount of concentration on the percussion for a Tame song.
“Apocalypse Dreams” is a bouncy two-part track with several percussion bursts, and is the track that encompesses Lonerism the best. My favorite song off the album “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” is addictive to sing along to and has a fantastic drop. “She just Won’t Believe Me” is a short 57 seconds, but creates an eerie atmosphere that makes the sadness in Kevin’s voice palpable.
Currents sounds different than Tame’s two previous records. It’s a little more poppy and less influenced by a `60s psychedelic sound. By now Kevin seems to have discovered more of his own sound, and is trying less to imitate others. He produced, recorded, and mixed the entire album by himself.
I always listen to “Nangs” while walking through the diag. I imagine everyone around me moving at an accelerated speed while I stay still observing it all. It sedates me into a dream-like state of mind that continues throughout the rest of the album. The following song “The Moment” is another song I love to listen to while walking the class. Kevin’s repeated line “It’s getting closer” trick my mind into thinking something great will happen during the day; whether it ends up being a good day or not, I’d rather be optimistic.
The interlude to “The Less I Know the Better” named “Gossip” is only 55 seconds long, but is one of my favorite tracks on the album. It’s re-establishes the dream atmosphere created with “Nangs” after the heavy overwhelming nature of “Eventually.” Then of course “The Less I Know the Better” had to make the list. While perhaps Tame Impala’s corniest song, it’s catchy as hell, and a great song to dance to.
The last two songs of the playlist once again fall back to back on Currents. In “Cause I’m a Man” Kevin touches on the fragile nature of his masculinity as well as the stupid shit people say in the heat of the moment. “Reality in Motion” reflects on the nature of making those first few moves towards a new love interest and all of the self-doubt that comes with it.
Tame is partially responsible for the resurgence of psychedelic rock as well as helping push it to new boundaries with the use of the new technology that is available to musicians today.