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Song of the day – 554: Tame Impala

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Tame Impala

All right. Fuck it. I totally got called out on this.

I wrote at the start of my post about The Greatest Album Ever Made:

I’m not going to be objective about this. Fuck you and your objectivity. Objectivity gets you alt-j. Objectivity gets you Tame Impala.

And Simon Price shot back immediately, commenting “If you honestly, truly think this is anything other than fucking brilliant, then there’s no talking to you, no reasoning with you, and I will never trust anything you ever say, ever again”. Not that me and the Price Man have ever agreed on much beyond a mutual hatred for Dave Grohl’s music, but:

It’s The Darkness rolled into the JAMMS isn’t it? But slicker and more disposable (not an insult).

Fuck it. He’s right. It was only a throwaway comment in the first place, there to illustrate a much broader and more important point. (Sighs heavily.) Guess I should have listened to that man Creney first time round.

The sound’s pretty easy to peg — all Sgt. Pepper Lennon crossed with early 70s Rundgren, almost ELO at times — but the songs operate more like dance/electronic music, burrowing their way out of extended passages of repetition. They progress through different textures rather than verse/chorus/bridge.

There’s a sameness of sound that works against the album. By the time ‘Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Could Control’ rolls around, I’m sick of hearing that same goddamn cymbal splash coupled with the bass fill from ‘Paperback Writer’ over and over and over again. I’m tempted to say that Tame Impala doesn’t have a style so much as three or four tricks that they keep repeating. The 51 minutes of Lonerism begs for a bit of variety. It’s too much of the same thing at the same tempo and I keep losing myself bored. And there’s nothing mind-expanding or psychedelic about that. Or to put it another way, it’s the psychedelia of sitting around your friend’s teenage bedroom smoking shitty weed, listening to people say the most banal shit, and wishing you could leave.

‘Elephant’ has a great monster chord change though. But still, its heaviness is laughable compared to say, Comets On Fire.

Tame Impala – Lonerism (Modular Fontana)

‘Elephant’ is great pastiche. The rest of their stuff still sucks, though… objectively speaking. QED.

3 Responses to Song of the day – 554: Tame Impala

  1. Daniel January 25, 2013 at 8:50 am

    It’s a kaleidoscopic blend of colorful things I hate, stirred into a precedented beige. “Feels Like I Always Go Backwards” was probably the best track, but on an album so backwards-looking, it’s uncomfortably apt.

  2. wally January 25, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Anyone who likes this may enjoy Elephant Stone’s new album –
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kcrgI1fEQE but I think Elephant Stone are much more talented.

  3. dzzzz (@dzzmzz) January 31, 2013 at 11:25 am

    I’ve hated Tame Impala’s previous stuff, but I’ll begrudgingly admit that I don’t half mind Lonerism.

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