Album Review: Tame Impala – Currents

Currents by Tame Impala

#aotd is Currents by Tame Impala. Musically, this album maintains the dreamy, hazy sounds Tame Impala are so revered for but moves away from rock and more into pop territory. The retro vibe of their previous works is still prominent on this album but while they borrow aspects of their sound from the past, the band still put a significantly modern twist on old ideas. The epic first track “Let it Happen” kicks Currents off in an abnormally quick fashion launching almost immediately into the light percussion and the woozy synth melody. The song is a perfect opener for the album, a great preview of the warped but gorgeous instrumentation and lonely lyricism to be found on the following tracks. The Postal Service-esque sense of isolation and claustrophobia of this album becomes apparent through Kevin Parker’s vocal delivery and the production. It is a pretty miraculous achievement for the band to be able to communicate these feelings through songs that are so pleasant and expansive on the surface. The production on this album is flawless, from the sparkly synths on tracks like “The Moment” to the jagged but softly strummed guitars on “Disciples”. The album is practically all synth-driven with the drums relegated mainly to the background, yet each track is able to leave a distinct impression. Kevin’s vocal performance stands out more so than it has in the past, possibly due to the albums bigger focus on melody. He more than justifies his place in the mix with a brilliant performance that is whimsical and optimistic when compared to the subject matter. Before now, I’ve never really hopped on the Tame Impala hype train, I mean I liked Lonerism but I could never justify their comparisons to legendary bands like The Beatles or Radiohead. Currents has me rethinking my stance however, the way the band have been able to alter their sound in a huge way while maintaining and building upon what made them so great to start with is staggering. If Lonerism was a summer day, than Currents is what happens when the sun goes down, still warm and inviting, but strikingly neon-lit.
Rating: 4.6/5

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