In 2010, Australian band Tame Impala came to prominence after the release of their debut album “Innerspeak.” Their sound was described as a psychedelia project with influences of indie rock and dream pop. After the critical acclaim of “Innerspeak,” Tame Impala recently released their sophomore LP, “Lonerism.” If there is such thing as a sophomore slump in music, “Lonerism” is perhaps the complete opposite.
When the recording for “Lonerism” began, Tame Impala’s band leader, Kevin Parker found himself continuing the sublimes of the band’s music while building off “Innerspeak.” Profoundly inspired by Todd Rundgren’s classic 1973 concept album “A Wizard, a True Star,” “Lonerism” is particularly synth heavy and experimental.
The lead single “Elephant,” is a perfect example. The track starts off with a pounding percussion and distorted bass line. The song then suddenly breaks off with a whisper “Here it comes,” before going into an analog synthesizer solo that is carries the rest of the song. While “Innerspeak” was more guitar oriented, the added synths to “Lonerism” gives Tame Impala’s music a whole different dimension. Other songs like “Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Could Control” include a more traditional instrumentation with the addition of psychedelic vibes Tame Impala has become known for. Not to mention tracks like “Keep On Lying,” “Apocalypse Dreams,” and “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” have almost a Sgt. Pepper’s feel to the composition of the music and sound.
Tame Impala is definitely a band to keep an eye on. Regarded as one of the best bands to come out of Australia, their eminence in the United States is steadily growing and fast approaching. “Lonerism” may very well be a 2012 version of Animal Collective’s 2009 “Merriweather Post Pavilion.” The orientation the album takes with the dwindling absence of guitars, make this synth record quite the trip. Furthermore, the track “Elephant” has become in my opinion one of 2012’s best songs. 4/5.
By KRUA Music Manager Felipe Godoy