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Tame Impala

The sound of spacy, guitar-heavy psychedelic pop has never really gone out of fashion since the Beatles brought it to the mainstream in the late '60s, with proponents like Pink Floyd and the Flaming Lips managing to make long careers out of mining its every seam. In the 2010s, there is no more popular psych pop group than Australia's Tame Impala.

Kevin Parker (vocals/guitar) and Dominic Simper (bass) formed the band as 13-year-olds in Perth in 1999, sticking to bedroom recordings until 2007, when Jay Watson joined them on drums and backing vocals. Their sound was pure late '60s, but wasn't the sound of any specific band from the era. They were as likely to channel the Nazz as the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Cocooned away inside walls of psychedelic fuzz in Western Australia, they re-created their preferred period one song at a time with the aid of gear and production techniques that sounded like they hadn't been dusted off since 1968.

Like a lot of the buzz bands of the mid- to late 2000s Tame Impala's story involves MySpace. The social networking website rocketed them from a teenage garage band to the sought-after trophy in a multiple-label bidding war. It started when Modular Records sent them a message after hearing several songs on their MySpace page and asked for more. Tame Impala sent them a demo with 20 songs, which led to requests and offers from everyone under the sun. After consideration, they stuck with the label that had shown first interest, and signed with Modular in 2008.

In September of that year they released their first self-titled EP. There was some confusion among reviewers, several of whom referred to the release as "Antares, Mira, Sun" after the notes written on the artwork, a representation of the Orion Nebula drawn by bandleader and songwriter Parker. As well as drawing the art, the perfectionist Parker micromanaged the recording, performing every instrument himself. The EP went to number ten on the ARIA charts and number one on the independent label charts. Though Parker played everything in the studio, live Tame Impala functioned as a real band, though at their early gigs they were famously unprepared and never wore shoes. At one such shambolic gig for a Vice Magazine party in Melbourne, indie electropop band MGMT's label manager caught their act and was impressed enough to offer them the support slot when his band toured Australia. That year they also supported the Black Keys and You Am I on national tours.

In 2010, Tame Impala made their full-length debut with the Dave Fridmann-mixed Innerspeaker. Recorded mostly in a remote beach house four hours outside Perth, Parker did almost all the music, this time letting Watson and Simper contribute a little bit. The album was a critical and popular success, gaining the band fans all over the globe, being nominated for many awards in Australia including ARIA Album of the Year and winning the J Album of the Year nod. Shortly after the record's release, Parker returned to his home studio in Perth to begin work on new material, which he began recording while the band was on tour. Along the way he lost half the album when his iPod fell out of his bag, he moved to Paris (where he produced Melody's Echo Chamber's album), and eventually, after a year of mixing with Dave Fridmann, he finished the album.

Released in 2012, Lonerism was a less guitar-heavy, far weirder album than Innerspeaker, yet it made an even bigger splash. Tame Impala repeated as winners of the J Award for Album of the Year and topped many year-end polls (including NME), and the record was nominated for Best Alternative Album at the Grammys. All this success made Parker an in-demand collaborator, and Mark Ronson was the biggest name to make a connection, with Parker working on a handful of tracks on Ronson's Uptown Special album. At the same time, Parker and some friends formed the space disco band AAA Aardvark Getdown Services. These were touchstones for the next Tame Impala record, 2015's Currents, which saw their sound expanded to include more uptempo, dance music-informed tracks and some smooth R&B stylings. ~ Jody Macgregor
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Currents

1. Let It Happen

2. Nangs

3. The Moment

4. Yes I'm Changing

5. Eventually

6. Gossip

7. The Less I Know The Better

8. Past Life

9. Disciples

10. 'Cause I'm A Man

11. Reality In Motion

12. Love/Paranoia

13. New Person, Same Old Mistakes

x

Track List: Lonerism

1. Be Above It

2. Endors Toi

3. Apocalypse Dreams

4. Mind Mischief

5. Music To Walk Home By

6. Why Won't They Talk To Me?

7. Feels Like We Only Go Backwards

8. Keep On Lying

9. Elephant

10. She Just Won't Believe Me

11. Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Could Control

12. Sun's Coming Up

x

Track List: InnerSpeaker

1. It Is Not Meant To Be

2. Desire Be Desire Go

3. Alter Ego

4. Lucidity

5. Why Won't You Make Up Your Mind?

6. Solitude Is Bliss

7. Island Walking

8. Jeremy's Storm

9. Expectation

10. The Bold Arrow Of Time

11. Runway Houses City Clouds

12. I Don't Really Mind

x

Track List: 'Cause I'm A Man (Single)

1. 'Cause I'm A Man

x

Track List: Be Above It (Erol Alkan Rework) (Single)

1. Be Above It (Erol Alkan Rework)

x

Track List: Eventually (Single)

5. Eventually

x

Track List: Let It Happen (Single)

1. Let It Happen

x

Track List: Live Versions

1. Endors Toi (Live)

2. Why Won't You Make Up Your Mind? (Live)

3. Sestri Levante (Live)

4. Mind Mischief (Live)

5. Desire Be Desire Go (Live)

6. Half Full Glass Of Wine (Live)

7. Be Above It (Live)

8. Feels Like We Only Go Backwards (Live)

9. Apocalypse Dreams (Live)

x

Track List: Why Won't You Make Up Your Mind? (Remixes)

1. Why Won't You Make Up Your Mind? (Erol Alkan Rework)

Comments

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nyleve112782 8
Just saw them last week in Brooklyn...t h e y were incredible live!! The music was so alive.
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Tame Impala, I really dig your groove. New to me. Love it.
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nyleve112782 8
hey me too emmerson! In Brooklyn with my hubby and a J it should be most enjoyable. If you get a chance listen to Dungeon...th e y are not bad either.
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I realize that. What I'm saying is if Currents is that easily translatable to something Rihana could put out (basically it was the exact same instr track), they've come a long way from what made them so great. Can't wait to hear the Lil Wayne version of Elephant.
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Absolute great band...fyi they didn't cover Rhianna song...it was the opposite.
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After Lonerism and Innerspeaker ' s epicness, why did he have to go and do Currents? Goodbye psychedelia and guitars, hello clubby R&B and Rhianna covers :(
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Yes! All of it.
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moorman009
@amber.major 6 Rihanna covered their song, really awesomely. It's not awkward, it's really cool
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Rihanna has the same exact song........ . .
This is awkward
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This band's vibe has me leaving my body ...i love it....someti m e s you need that escape...and their music style provides that....here i go on my journey
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I love the song feels like we only go backwards and if you agree with me then please follow me or comment on my profile
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i'm in love
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kevin parker is the goat
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They changed my life
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Can't wait to see them again in June :)
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...and, anyone attending the Tame Impala Red Rocks concert in CO on August 31... I will be hosting a pre-party for all interested. Message me on Pandora. Cheers!
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lol, bobonnit, reading your posts, you are pretty black & white. That's unfortunate and narrow minded when it comes to art of any form. Clearly, Tame Impala approaches their music with sincere passion. The sound is an amazing multi-decade throwback mix, dating back to its 60's psychedelic roots. At its best, it is truly transporting to another time and place. I find it very refreshing, as I do many of the artists on my Tame Impala station. Tame Impala '16 @ Red Rocks. Got my tickets!!!
Report as inappropriate
lol, bobonnit, reading your posts, you are pretty black & white. That's unfortunate and narrow minded when it comes to art of any form. Clearly, Tame Impala approaches their music with sincere passion. The sound is an amazing multi-decade throwback mix, dating back to its 60's psychedelic roots. At its best, it is truly transporting to another time and place. I find it very refreshing, as I do many of the artists on my Tame Impala station. Tame Impala '16 @ Red Rocks. Got my tickets!!!
Report as inappropriate
Saw them at lollapalooza in Chicago. God, words can't describe the way they perform and how they take me in another year
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Ya bish
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mitochondria is the power house of the cell
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How's this? If you don't like them: GET THE F**K OFF THEIR PAGE, YOU DANIMAL LOOKING MOTHERF**KER S
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they are amazing tho
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they are amazing tho
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They are annoying. Thumbs down
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I haven't loved a band this much in decades! (Yeah, I'm old) :)
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It feels like we only go backwards, baby. Every part of me says go ahead.
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I fuking love them so much like its not even normal.
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u give me life n**ga
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������������
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fell like i touch the universe
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fell like i touch the universe
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I feel the fuzz!
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Sounds like some barrett pink floyd
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The lead singer sound a bit like John Lennon I love it!
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This band has a unique sound I love :) ��
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My sis loves this song!
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cmbennifield
So happy I've been introduced to this band! #newfav
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All time favorite current-day band!!! I will die the day I get to hear them live!!!!!!!
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The band that introduced me to pshycadelic rock
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just heard them on a local station, in tampa,fl, very different, they do have something great, love, cause I'm a man!
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Great things from the wonderful mind of Kevin Parker. New album is terrific!!!
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Lovin the new album! Can't wait to hear more
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spensoid
Mellow but not brain dead. Bravo!
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esamano73
They're like a mix of Pink Floyd, ELO and Supertramp. They have a deep respect for classic rock. Fantastic music.
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Saw these badass mother fers in Austin TX in 2012 or 13 .. yeah and even drank a beer with one of there mothers!! \m/ everything they do is gold
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Bt dubs the ��was a weed leaf
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Mmmmmmmmmm.. . . .
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nyleve112782 8
Just saw them last weekend, and I'm still in awe of their sound. Amazing show Let it Happen was like symphony.
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