NBHAP Rating: 3,5/5
[one_half last=”yes”]TAME IMPALA
Label: Interscope Records
01. Let It Happen
03. The Moment
04. Yes I’m Changing
07.The Less I know The Better
08. Past Life
10. Cause I’m A Man
11. Reality In Motion
13. New Person, Same Old Mistakes
From the get-go, listening to the new TAME IMPALA record Currents is like diving into a phantasmagoric ocean of splendour and colour. It’s not an especially complex body of water, but it’s unquestionably smooth and delicious. The slick production extends that of the previous record to an almost warped extent, plastic and chrome and neon like the eye-wiggling cover. Opening track Let It Happen is a seven minute slow-unfolding, and most of the others are either similarly stretched-out and woozy or brief and fleeting, which gives the impression that Kevin Parker is still experimenting in the sonic lab.
Shiny, shiny, shiny
In the same breath, it’s worth noting that much of the album feels somewhat formulaic. The lyrics are basic and repeated, the shimmering envelope of guitar that became a staple by Lonerism projected over to almost an echo. It’s brilliant on tracks such as Cause I’m A Man, drawn out to new heights of sensuality that leave me begging to press repeat, but this gets a little muted once you’ve already been drowning in it for the half hour previous. You’ve either got to let yourself get completely lost in it/transcendental, or find yourself squirming a little about the latest TAME IMPALA output. I’ve mostly found myself squirmy; those slow, breathy vocals are surprisingly grating after a while.
It’s been nothing short of incredible to watch this band shift from playing in my local pub to finding a legion of adoring fans across the globe. Groups like TAME IMPALA are at the forefront of the modern psychedelic movement and, while this wave cops plenty of criticism from long-timers, it’s still a pretty interesting direction to see popular music heading in. While sections of this record are indulgent in a slightly dull sense, there are some real gems in this chest that show both the persistence of the band’s signature sound and their ability to push beyond it. This sure is a different kettle of fish to the garage-licked band who gave us Half Full Glass Of Wine a few years ago, but the shift is refreshing to watch in many ways.
Fans already besotted by TAME IMPALA will find nothing to disappoint them in this glittering release, but you may consider shielding your eyes at times.