Album review: Tame Impala – ‘Innerspeaker’ (Modular)

Our rating:

The Aussie four-piece dip into their stash to produce a solid ounce of late '60s psychedelia

The traditional, conservative view of rock music, it is said, is that “it peaked in 1967 and has been going steadily downhill ever since”. If so, then [a]Tame Impala[/a] are Norman Tebbit times Michael Howard. They’re constantly striving to pull up the drawbridge and whip us back to a half-imagined belle epoque that ended way too soon for longhairs of their slender years.

The days when men were men, women were girl-groups, and life revolved around expanding your dome via the classic power-trio psychedelic blues rock acts like [a]Cream[/a] and [a]The Jimi Hendrix Experience[/a]. Those guys – as gramps will tell you – those guys could really play.

Well Tame Impala can play too. They can play like no-one’s business. And as opposed to most updaters, who tackle this sort of
stuff from a flatfooted perspective, TI have understood that being virtuoso is a team sport: it’s all about the dynamics and interplay. Their multi-part duelling begins instantly – guitar, bass and drums orbiting each other in a complex, delicate synch, before Kevin Parker’s phased vocal comes over the psychedelic intercom to tell you your mind is about to be expanded, while long-time