Lydia Jenkin is an entertainment feature writer for the New Zealand Herald.

Album review: Tame Impala - Lonerism

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Cover for Lonerism by Tame Impala. Photo / Supplied
Cover for Lonerism by Tame Impala. Photo / Supplied

It may have seemed unlikely that Perth would produce such an intrepid psychedelic 21st century rock outfit, but one EP and two albums in, the five-piece act led by Kevin Parker have proved they're as accomplished as other swirling, noisy, dream rock bands like MGMT and Yeasayer.

Lonerism was recorded mostly by Parker in home studios in Perth and France, and alters their previous sonic palette a little, with more propulsion and densely layered textures; the often soaring melodic 60s-inspired shapes fuzzied and coloured by interesting lyrical ideas or crunchy motifs.

Mind Mischief is an early highlight, aurally exploding like a colourful video of Woodstock, all sweet, high falsetto and cruisey vocal harmonies. Why Won't They Talk To Me? has a touch of innocent youthful longing about it, perfectly accompanied by spacey synth phrases.

Keep On Lying has a darker swing to it, organ chords and low grooves providing the earworm while a light cacophony of indiscernible whispering and laughter plays out over the top, almost Pink Floyd-esque in its trippy vibe and extended guitar riffing.

And then the brilliant Elephant arrives, with its pumping rock motif and classic late-night synth noodling. The timbres and textures can occasionally get a little incessant, flooding some of the more tender moments, but there's a great experimental spirit to Tame Impala.

Stars: 4/5
Verdict: Retro shapes with a new palette

Buy a copy of Lonerism by Tame Impala, here.


- NZ Herald

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