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Tuesday, 30 July 2013 12:00

Summer night soundtracks: 'Lonerism' by Tame Impala + Video

Summer night soundtracks: 'Lonerism' by Tame Impala
Written by Blair Stiles
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One night, while we smoked too many cigarettes on his back porch, he played the song "Feels Like We Only Go Backwards." He warned us about his apparent lack of skill in covering the Tame Impala track.

Unabated by his self-effacing ways, the three of us leaned in to listen as mosquitos stole nutrients from our bodies. His falsetto's sleepy hiss dove over splintered Casio keys. Josh's cover was a trial run to see if the "Lonerism" single would work in a set list for his band, Brother Lee and the Leather Jackals.

We moved inside and listened to the song's original incarnation. Kevin Parker's whine, a laconic utter that echoed John Lennon's, fluttered above the dusk-colored haze of pinched percussion and emotional entropy. We listened, somehow solitary amongst a gaggle of juiced peers, as Parker slipped into the safety net of his past. Although set low, we heard the song over the party's drunken din. The noise in the kitchen was similar to the warbled laughter obfuscated on "Keep On Lying" by "The White Album"-informed guitar. "Keep On Lying" would come later when the album was engulfed in whole by the loving swing of newly consummated camaraderie. Satisfied by "Feels Like We Only Go Backwards," we stopped our listening party.

Tame Impala have been called revivalists. Much of the band's panoramic sonic universe hints at '70s echo chambers of LSD-infused guitar and vocal harmonies. Much as genres of yore are revived by musicians with the technological know-how of today, summer revives our frosted souls from winter's bite. The tactile, fluid, aural environments of Tame Impala's free-form classic rock is indicative of summer's metamorphosis from colder seasons; it reinvents us. The experience of lasting another year has shaped us, young and old, into our present and future incarnations. We shed the layers that had us discontented, shivering and shackled to the radiator; we relish the sublime nature of sticky, tank top-bearing shoulders. We break away, slowly, from our old selves.

Once a life was a sanctum of unlearned reactions -- emotions hindered our ability to learn and separate ourselves. Through the awakening of spring and summer, we become what we have learned. Like Tame Impala, who use their musical forefathers for inspiration, we relinquish the selves we no longer are. We have a new summer skin, an evolution of the past.

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