Tuesday, June 29, 2010

runway houses city clouds

Yesterday I was lucky enough to catch the australian neo-psychedelic outfit Tame Impala at a free show at The Echo. The band initially caught my eye as I was perusing emusic's website and was intrigued to find them the most downloaded band of the week. I did my usual 30-sec music taste test before I eagerly downloaded their debut LP InnerSpeaker. Right off the bat I was hooked. Lead singer Kevin Parker's vocals sound hauntingly similar to John Lennon's via Rubber Soul or Revolver and their swirling melodies harkened back to shades of Jefferson Airplane and Pink Floyd. At the same time I was amazed at how modern and new their sound was.

Their LP found me at the exact right moment. I checked their myspace and found that they would be traveling through LA in a couple of weeks. Already their initial show had sold out so they added two more sets, one to be free. Yes, free! Just the right price for me.

So me and my friend Casey trekked across town, enjoyed a little walk through the novelties of Echo Park and found ourselves sipping on beer and whiskey waiting for Tame Impala to take the stage. To my disappointment we had to stand through a mediocre at best band, WEAVE!, whose songs all sounded like poor knock-offs of Talking Heads songs circa Fear of Music.

But all was more than rectified once the Aussies took the stage. Their set was short (about 45 minutes) and in that time only managed to play four songs. But that was more than enough to hook me. The highlight of the night was when they closed with "Half Full Glass of Wine" off their 2008 EP. It was a 12-minute jam driven with power chord guitars and trippy space-invading pedals.

Here's a little taste:

tame impala // half full glass of wine jam @ grasslands gallery from Jimmy Morris on Vimeo.

In reading up on Tame Impala I came across a playlist series they did for their record label Modular. Turns out their drummer Jay Watson is a huge Yes fan.... his entire playlist consists of Yes songs. Now whenever I'm listening to "Runway Houses City Clouds" I can't help but think of the "Wurm" part of Yes' "Starship Trooper". Love it!

Runway Houses City Clouds - Tame Impala

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