After having originally blogged about this band in May (via James) and including them as the cornerstone of Lipstick Communism’s No Bummer Summer Mixtape, when I found out Tame Impala would be playing an L.A. show at the Silverlake Lounge I lunged for my laptop to reserve a ticket at the tiny venue. With the brilliance and success of their most recent album, Innerspeaker, I knew I would never get a chance to see them in such an intimate venue again, the next time they headed to the States.
This being my first time at The Silverlake Lounge, upon entering my olfactory senses were overwhelmed with the odors of stale alcohol and sweat. Lovely. Looking around the tiny bar the first couple of thoughts that entered my head are: no one here must own a hairbrush and a small, but substantial, minority must have missed the deodorant aisle at their local CVS. After scanning the venue, which took all of 2 seconds, Tanya and I headed to the bar for our traditional and obligatory “show” beer. There’s only one beer on tap and it’s PBR. For 4 bucks. Barf. Sorry (and rip Dennis Hopper) but this must be hipster hell.
Review + ah-may-zing tracks after the cut –>
The opening band, Bowery Beasts, whose unifying theme must have been rocking ugly, thrifted women’s sweaters hit the stage and the crowd was still not at its full sold-out capacity. I don’t have much to say except: Listen, lead singer, put on a slightly larger pair of pants next time so your dick’s outline isn’t assaulting me throughout your entire set. Isn’t it bad enough I have stand here and power through your indecipherable yipping and wailing? Their gorgeous guitarists may be their only redeeming quality, but I am sure that is reason enough to gather a dedicated fan base.
With the conclusion of Bowery’s set, it was onto the main event and you could feel the excitement rise and buzz in the air as the crowd surged forward towards the stage and the space suddenly filled to standing room only. After a brief interlude and set up, the four young men (Kevin Parker, Dominic Simper, Jay Watson, and Nick Allbrook) from Down Under, the very same ones we ran into on the smoking patio outside, modestly shuffled bare-footed onto the stage to much applause. From the very first chord of their intro, “It Is Not Meant To Be,” Tame Impala transferred its captive and adoring audience back to 1967, it was all I could do to resist putting some braids in my hair and throwing up a peace sign. The crowd swayed, danced, and uncontrollably smiled to their Beatles’ Revolver-inspired, psychedelic, hypno-groove rock; it helps that the lead singer’s voice bears an uncanny and brilliant resemblance to Paul McCartney’s. With a set that spanned most of my favorite tracks from Innerspeaker (“Desire Be Desire Go,” “Why Won’t You Make Up Your Mind,” “Alter Ego,” “Lucidity”) and a closer that was a 12+ minute melodic yet dissonant merger of “Solitude Is Bliss,” “Skeleton Tiger” and “Half Full Glass of Wine” I was left an even greater fan of this band than when I had walked into the Silverlake Lounge. It helped that they were completely charming the whole time, too. At one point, the lead singer remarked, “It amazes me that we are from the other side of the world and all you people are here to see us.” That’s not much to be astounded by, Kevin Parker, as long as your band continues to create music so full of feeling and happiness then we will continue to show up and consider it an honor to be your audience.
Moral of the story: Get your hands on Innerspeaker and listen to it on repeat for the next few weeks. And the next time you find Tame Impala playing in a town near you, buy your tickets asap and have a glimpse of how beautiful your life would have sounded had you been born in the 1970’s to awesome Aussie hippie parents.
Tame Impala – Lucidity (mp3)