Tuesday, September 08, 2020

Tame Impala Impress With Tiny Desk

Video: Watch Tame Impala Play A Tiny Desk From Home : NPR

There aren’t many people on this planet who don’t know who Tame Impala are, but if you are part of the unlucky few then prepare to be enlightened. Tame Impala are an Australian band, who offer psychedelic musical wizardry in the form of catchy pop songs. The man largely behind the production and writing duties is Kevin Parker, a multi-instrumentalist who first began Tame Impala as a solo music project, before realising he needed more than two hands when playing live. Emerging from a small but vibrant music scene in Perth, Tame Impala have gone from strength to strength, becoming regular headliners at huge festivals in the last couple of years.

The Coronavirus pandemic has undoubtedly shaped how live music is received currently. Whilst some countries are experimenting with socially distanced festivals and gigs, many don’t have such an option, making the internet the next best place to capture that live music feeling. NPR have been running the Tiny Desk series for over a decade now. Nearly 1000 bands have performed behind (and sometimes even on top of) Bob Boilen’s iconic desk, amassing over 2 billion views collectively. Recently, Tiny Desk has had to adapt, with musicians sending in recorded sets from the comfort of their own homes. 

Despite the regular changes in location though, the energy and intimacy of the performances have  remained.

This intimacy is what many Tame Impala fans seek, with legions of listeners avidly dissecting every instrumentation and lyric whenever new music is released. There are many speculations about Parker’s production process, and by filming a set in their home-made ‘Tame Impala sound system’, the band have allowed an audience a closer look at their tools and techniques.

The set covers three songs from Tame Impala’s last album, ‘The Slow Rush’, beginning with a rendition of ‘Breathe Deeper’, a spacy track placed midway through the album. The track is carried by sparkly hypnotic keys, and a simple but solid drum beat. Parker’s signature falsetto voice delivers the repetitive lyrics as he moves nimbly around the array of synths, mixers, and drum machines laid before him.

‘Is It True?’ is next up, led by a crunchy heavily reverbed electric guitar interspersed over the top of a quicker drum beat. As the track winds down, the familiar piano opening of ‘Patience’ greets listeners, ending the set with one of Tame Impala’s most popular recent singles. ‘Patience’ flows between a pulsating rhythm and bassline, before Parker dulls the sounds for the earnest choruses.

Tame Impala’s Tiny Desk is yet another show of strengths for musicians at the top of their respective game. Endlessly inventive and playful, Parker’s music navigates the tricky ins and outs of life through otherworldly voyages. Even though the prospect of seeing Tame Impala live is far off for now, NPR are providing the sweet hit we all need.

- Huwen Edwards


No comments:

Post a Comment

Comment Here;