Whether you’ve only recently settled in Perth, or resided here for a lifetime, it isn’t unusual to be acquainted with its reputation of being perhaps ‘the sleepiest city in the world’.
What would be more unusual is if you had not ever come across the likes of local and acclaimed band Tame Impala, who have surmounted the artistic seclusion Perth is commonly associated with. Described as ‘psychedelic hypno-groove melodic rock’, they are one of the most unique alternative music acts to have surfaced in the industry.
Their second album Lonerism, released back in 2012, remains a revolutionary illustration of the innovation that Perth has to offer. The most well-known tracks are ‘Elephant’ and ‘Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’, but there are other hidden gems on the album to thoroughly appreciate. Injected with ghost-synthesizers and soulful voice samples, the album’s textured tracks still remain loyal to its roots of washed-out guitar and drum melodies. Lonerism incorporates each of these elements and integrates them into cohesive layers of surreal-sounding ecstasy.
Whilst the album’s name lends itself to a state of isolation and fictive idleness, there is defiance of this premonition. Kevin Parker, the main man behind the inner workings of Tame Impala notes that the album’s emanative ideas “come out the most pure and untainted by logical thought”. More than just a string of pleasant electronic sound structures, Lonerism is exemplary in showcasing the magnitude of growth and personal attainment artists undergo during the creative process, thereon producing musical masterpieces. Parker adds, “I have to be alone to be able to write the type of music I want for Tame Impala.”
In reality, the prospect of solitude does not appear too daunting. This is especially true when Perth’s rather incestuous music scene allows homegrown artists to transcend adjacent pressures of success in search of greater, self-conceived artistic oeuvres.