When you’re listening to a Tame Impala track, it kind of feels like magic – each piece exploding into textured layering wrapping up the sentimental vocals – seeming all a bit surreal. The latest in Modular’s ongoing Studio Sessions series is a chance to see how it’s all put together. Recorded in the local Perth basement of Fremantle’s Norfolk Hotel, the boys are barefoot, back home and performing three favourites off their freshly released album Lonerism: ‘Apocalypse Dreams’, ‘Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’ and ‘Elephant’.
Director Kiku Ohe backs the performance with technicolour responsive lighting, just as we would have wanted – and giving us a taste of what’s to come with their upcoming national tour. It kicks off in full force with ‘Apocalypse Dreams’, while we’re perched over Jay Watson’s shoulder on keys. Band members are in their own moment but the music is at once organic and perfectly timed.
‘Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’ follows and maintains the classic spacey psychedelic Tame Impala ambience. Overall, the sound is not too different from the record but it’s not a radio recording – the studio sessions keep the raw scratchy electric guitar and unpolished vocals. That being said, it almost feels like Kevin Parker could be whispering in your ear, it’s that immediate. This recording of ‘Elephant’ lacks some of the power in the original bass but it’s still an awesome jam to witness.
The intimacy of a studio session suits Tame Impala’s music, enhancing what already exists as a personal listening experience and drawing it out up close and personal.
Published on Purple Sneakers.