Tame Impala’s 5 Favourite Psych Tracks

After being blown away by their stunning Glastonbury set, we asked Tame Impala to come up with their top five psych tracks. Tune in, turn on, rock out:

1 Queens Of The Stone Age – ‘Better Living Through Chemistry’ from ‘Rated R’

I don’t know if anyone else considers this a psychedelic album but I do. I think it was the first time I’d been taken on a voyage musically. Songs like ‘Better Living Through Chemistry’ and ‘I Think I Lost My Headache’. I was 17 and I’d just got my driver’s license and I was driving round with this blaring in my little Mitsubishi Colt speakers feeling like I was whizzing down the rainbow road in Mario Kart. There isn’t much in the way of crazy delay/filter sweeps/flangers,which shows how good the songwriting and compositions are… that they can do that to you without needing any of that stuff.
– Kevin Parker

2 The Jimi Hendrix Experience – ‘Spanish Castle Magic’ from ‘Axis: Bold As Love’

This was my favourite album ever when I was a kid, but the older I got the more I realised why I liked it. It wasn’t just the crazy production, the guitar histrionics or the even the insane amounts of charisma radiating from Hendrix’s balls, but the sheer imagination of the songwriting. I genuinely consider Jimi to be one of the greatest songwriters ever, everything he wrote on this album is dripping with inspiration.
– Jay Watson


3 Brainticket – ‘Brainticket, Part 1, Part 1 Conclusion, Part 2’ from ‘Cottonwoodhill’

Everything a psychedelic explorer could ever need. Ass grinding groove, catchy air guitar hooks, bizarre alien vocals panning across the brain and sultry German beat monologues delivered with a passion only available to the mad or the tripping. Regarding this, a warning – side B is the most aurally unsettling orgiastic toothbrush car crash ever made and if you turn it up too loud your friends will leave, the cops will come and your brain will dribble out of your nose.
– Nick Albrook

4 Funkadelic – ‘Friday Night, August the 14th’ from ‘Free Your Mind And Your Ass Will Follow’

Funkadelic’s second album, isn’t my favourite album of theirs, that title goes to ‘Maggot Brain’, but it’s definitely their freakiest. Probably has something to do with George Clinton mixing it on acid (I can’t think of something more stressful!). In fact, a professional studio dude would think it’s mixed absurdly, but that’s totally the appeal for me, something that’s missing in so many modern recordings – craziness and bombast over perfection. The title track is the most insane, but my favourite is “Friday Night, August the 14th”, total reverb drenched crack-funk. Badass!!!
– Jay Watson

5 The Velvet Underground – ‘Sister Ray’ from ‘White Light White Heat’

This is an abrasive noise pop album, but the sonic lunacy and eccentric mixing and story telling are mystifying enough to be a psychedelic experience. The guitar squeals after “and then I felt my mind split open”, mouth made drill noises, obscure Kafkaesque storytelling – it’s all so wide eyed and unhinged scary. Sister Ray is an unrelenting pornographic crack-mantra.
– Nick Albrook


PLUS: Butthole Surfers – All of ‘Locust Abortion Technician’

As extremely psychedelic as tripping in a soiled bog. They use all the most potent freak-out sensations – fear, confusion, revulsion, hysteria. It’s a pretty bad trip, but I think in their time the Butthole Surfers would have explored the deepest, dankest crevices of the acid cave, and liked it. This tells the tale very well.
– Nick Albrook