Hippie Reviews: Tame Impala - Lonerism


Hippie Reviews

Tame Impala
Lonerism

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Tame Impala is an Australian neo-psychedelic pop-rock band who recently brought out their second full length album, Lonerism.
There are two sorts of psychedelic bands; the first are the ones who try to bring back the 70's and 60's era, investing thousands into authentic tube amps and synths; the second are the experimental bands who will use and abuse every single weird effect and noise at their advantage to make a true, modern day psychedelic experience. While their first LP, Innerspeaker, definitely fell within the first category this album has them sounding way more confident within their own sound and edging more towards the experimental side of things. With some excellent songwriting and colorful recording, while keeping that heavy 70's influence to recreate that vibe. You'll get plenty of layers of echo over the vocals and fuzzy drumlines which really define a larger part of Tame Impala's sound on this LP. It definitely gives that neo-psychedelic sound, but now without ripping off the Beatles, which is an accomplishment of its own.

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Be Above It
I loved the concept of this song. The looped drum and vocal samples with the exciting and quite aggressive, but also rich synthesizers do a great job at giving this song a quite unique flair and its vocals are very catchy as well. However great the concept, it's doesn't have much variety and thus gets quite repetitive...

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Endors Toi
For the most part this track is a cranked and distorted psychedelic jam. It has an amazing build into it, progressively getting more and more dense till it reaches its climax!... then it stops however, which is a shame. I had the feeling they could've made more of this track.

Apocalypse Dreams
This one kicks off as a very straightforward and upbeat, more back to the 60's flavored song, giving some very colorful, well defined instrumentation with some heavy echoing and impressive, dense layering into the final parts leading up to this sudden switch that turns this song into a mellow and lush soundscape which gets more and more dense as the song progresses.

Mind Mischief
The layering in this song is gorgeous, guitar melodies and nicely distinct vocals go hand in hand under the loud synths that pan throughout the song. It does however suffer the same fate that the opening track did and gets repetitive rather quickly.

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Music to Walk Home By
This track has some interesting layering going on. The vocals almost seem to blend in with the guitar riff, which at some points even overwhelms the vocal lines in this song. We get some interesting drum fills and nicely distincted synths jump out of the mix to give a quick little solo before drowning back in the mix. Before the end we are reminded of how good the verse on this track is.
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Why Won't They Talk To Me?
Nice, lush organs open this, what will be one of the more upbeat and vigorating tracks on this thing. The driving drum beat is varied and makes for a dense, but interesting mix with some barely drowned out vocals on this track, which makes for a nice change of pace.

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Feels Like We Only Go Backwards
I adored this song, I might even dare say that this is my favorite song of the year.
It has an very deep bass sample forming the opening, followed by this incredibly lush hook/chorus crossover which forms the centerpiece of this track. Completely disregarding the need for anything else, except for a small bridge keeping things fresh. We loop this chorus, but each time it's different. The drum patterns are never the same, the bass sounds organic and enhances the fuzzy and lush psychedelic sound of this track with a little bit of clarity. All in all it makes for one of the most enjoyable listening experiences in a long time.

Keep on Lying
This song has a nice summer vibe to it with its pulsating synths, its little surf rock guitar licks and over the top echoed vocals and vocal samples. Bringing along a strong build into a much louder and quite uncontrolled jam counting in the ocheoing vocals going straight through this all.

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Elephant
What immediately stands out on this track is the rock; a Black Sabbath-like riff drives the track with these softer instrumentation and less experimentation like we know from Tame Impala's first album Innerspeaker. After the chorus we are surprised with some sour synths which blend into a very loud, psychedelic jam which sounds absolutely amazing.

She Just Won't Believe Me
This very short track is completely dominated by synths even going so far as having vocals backing these synths, near the end we get a guitar lick belting through the mix before it all cuts off... a refreshing and powerful, but short track.

Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Could Control
One of the more lyrically strong tracks, mainly because it isn't as drowned out by the density of the instrumentation. Later in the song we get a nice instrumental part, which has some high pitched synths belting through the mix of soft drum fills and chords. It's a nice refreshing change of pace nearing the end of the breathtaking album.

Sun's Coming Up
It's a piano ballad! Unfortunately the vocals sound somewhat out of place, like they belong on their more dense tracks, but certainly not a ballad like piano. The outro doesn't do much for me either; a very vibrant guitar doodling over a long sample recorded at a beach. Not a strong ending to an overall extremely consistent and good album.

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Conclusion

Tame Impale nailed it with this album. Their sound is way more confident, stepping away a bit from their 60's and 70's roots to develop their own sound within neo-psychedelia. Which is trademarked with very high quality and colorful production. Sometimes a tad too dense, which can distract from the quite excellent songwriting at times and it has dense psychedelic jams. They also have pretty much every single vocal line soaked in reverb and echoes which contribute to that 70's psychedelic vibe.
This is without a doubt the most colorful and nicely textured neo-psychedelia records I've heard in a very long time.

I'm giving this LP an 8.7/10

What did you think? What would you like me to review next?

Well, I just sampled a couple of those tracks, and I'm not a fan. However, now I at least understand what you were going on about with the technical jargon in your review, and I can certainly see the appeal of the music itself. Clean recording, and a vibrant soundscape... just doesn't hit my personal taste in music, I guess.
So, all in all, good job! What matters most is that you had fun writing this piece, anyway. :)

And now for my review request: "Antigravity" by Zircon.
http://zirconstudios.bandcamp.com/album/antigravity
Been listening to it for weeks. Let's see how it holds up under your scrutiny.

They've got a really good sound. I'll definitely be getting this album. Thanks for posting the review :) doubt I would have heard them otherwise.
Got any other gems you'd care to share?

Lately, I've been getting into the whole soul/hiphop/mellow beats kinda jam. If you get the chance, you should check out the album Modal Soul by Nujabes. Beautiful beats with great lyrical content that I think a fellow hippie would enjoy.

hooblabla6262:
They've got a really good sound. I'll definitely be getting this album. Thanks for posting the review :) doubt I would have heard them otherwise.
Got any other gems you'd care to share?

Lately, I've been getting into the whole soul/hiphop/mellow beats kinda jam. If you get the chance, you should check out the album Modal Soul by Nujabes. Beautiful beats with great lyrical content that I think a fellow hippie would enjoy.

My pleasure!

And I could very well recommend some, but I might cover those in later reviews as well. I have a soft spot for more psychedelic/experimental acts. So you'll definitely be seeing more reviews of that nature over the time!
(The next album review is gonna be a lot heavier then this though ;P )

I'm not that big on Nujabes, not on his flow, nor the layering of the instrumentation over his beats. That saying, I don't know if a Modal Soul review would make me, nor you particularly happy..

JochemHippie:

hooblabla6262:
They've got a really good sound. I'll definitely be getting this album. Thanks for posting the review :) doubt I would have heard them otherwise.
Got any other gems you'd care to share?

Lately, I've been getting into the whole soul/hiphop/mellow beats kinda jam. If you get the chance, you should check out the album Modal Soul by Nujabes. Beautiful beats with great lyrical content that I think a fellow hippie would enjoy.

My pleasure!

And I could very well recommend some, but I might cover those in later reviews as well. I have a soft spot for more psychedelic/experimental acts. So you'll definitely be seeing more reviews of that nature over the time!
(The next album review is gonna be a lot heavier then this though ;P )

I'm not that big on Nujabes, not on his flow, nor the layering of the instrumentation over his beats. That saying, I don't know if a Modal Soul review would make me, nor you particularly happy..

Fair enough. I grew up in a very multicultural house, so my tastes are all over the place. Few albums I love, but I enjoy many many many.

Have you ever heard of Metronomy, or Ben Caplan? Two very different groups with two very different sounds, but I enjoy them immensely.
A friend of mine atually introduced me to Metronomy. The way you speak about music reminds me a lot of him. He's very particular about what he considers to be great music.

I'd really like to see a review of someone within the same genre as Nujabes, who's flow and beats you enjoy. If that's not to much to ask :)

hooblabla6262:

JochemHippie:

hooblabla6262:
They've got a really good sound. I'll definitely be getting this album. Thanks for posting the review :) doubt I would have heard them otherwise.
Got any other gems you'd care to share?

Lately, I've been getting into the whole soul/hiphop/mellow beats kinda jam. If you get the chance, you should check out the album Modal Soul by Nujabes. Beautiful beats with great lyrical content that I think a fellow hippie would enjoy.

My pleasure!

And I could very well recommend some, but I might cover those in later reviews as well. I have a soft spot for more psychedelic/experimental acts. So you'll definitely be seeing more reviews of that nature over the time!
(The next album review is gonna be a lot heavier then this though ;P )

I'm not that big on Nujabes, not on his flow, nor the layering of the instrumentation over his beats. That saying, I don't know if a Modal Soul review would make me, nor you particularly happy..

Fair enough. I grew up in a very multicultural house, so my tastes are all over the place. Few albums I love, but I enjoy many many many.

Have you ever heard of Metronomy, or Ben Caplan? Two very different groups with two very different sounds, but I enjoy them immensely.
A friend of mine atually introduced me to Metronomy. The way you speak about music reminds me a lot of him. He's very particular about what he considers to be great music.

I'd really like to see a review of someone within the same genre as Nujabes, who's flow and beats you enjoy. If that's not to much to ask :)

I'm home in a lot of genres and no, that's not too much to ask :3

I've got a much hardcore-punk review coming up next, after that I'll try to find something suitable for your request ^_^

Nice review, this is relevant to my interests. Tame Impala have been appearing at UK festivals for years now bringing their notable ambiance to a frankly hungry public still listening to their copies of Santana's Abraxas over and over again (i know i still do). Needless to say I'm a fan.

Also Review the new Deftones album 'Koi No Yokan' so i don't have to : P. It's awesome.

Scrumpmonkey:
Nice review, this is relevant to my interests. Tame Impala have been appearing at UK festivals for years now bringing their notable ambiance to a frankly hungry public still listening to their copies of Santana's Abraxas over and over again (i know i still do). Needless to say I'm a fan.

Also Review the new Deftones album 'Koi No Yokan' so i don't have to : P. It's awesome.

Noted and in the queue!

JochemHippie:

Scrumpmonkey:
Nice review, this is relevant to my interests. Tame Impala have been appearing at UK festivals for years now bringing their notable ambiance to a frankly hungry public still listening to their copies of Santana's Abraxas over and over again (i know i still do). Needless to say I'm a fan.

Also Review the new Deftones album 'Koi No Yokan' so i don't have to : P. It's awesome.

Noted and in the queue!

Man Soundgarden have a new album out as well. It's like fucking Christmas this week!

Scrumpmonkey:

JochemHippie:

Scrumpmonkey:
Nice review, this is relevant to my interests. Tame Impala have been appearing at UK festivals for years now bringing their notable ambiance to a frankly hungry public still listening to their copies of Santana's Abraxas over and over again (i know i still do). Needless to say I'm a fan.

Also Review the new Deftones album 'Koi No Yokan' so i don't have to : P. It's awesome.

Noted and in the queue!

Man Soundgarden have a new album out as well. It's like fucking Christmas this week!

That one was already in the queue!

 

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