Reviewed by Neph Basedow, Fri., July 31, 2015
Tame Impala's third LP traverses typical digestion time. The album's thrilling opener, "Let It Happen," won over fans at May's Levitation fest despite its newness. The Aussies previewed several forthcoming tunes that night, each receiving approval that commonly arrives with years of familiarity thanks to airtight pop appeal. That vibrant synth-pop/disco hybrid permeates Currents, as does woozy Seventies psychedelia, with Supertramp and Prince sensed as oft as the Beatles and Pink Floyd. Guitars aren't as central as on 2012's Lonerism, home to bass-thumped breakout "Elephant." Instead, danceable grooves and R&B beats heighten the disc's eclectic imagination. During punch-drunk popper "Reality in Motion," the sweltering sensation of a blitzed club's neon lights works its way through the anthemic chorus. Alternatively, the sultry funk walk-downs and crooning refrain of "'Cause I'm a Man" recall the Delfonics' ardent Philly soul. Bandleader Kevin Parker, 29, who wrote, recorded, produced, and mixed Currents, waxes tender on "Eventually" and "Yes I'm Changing." Given a breakup with musician Melody Prochet, the latter's lyrics carry dual weight when combined with the quintet's international breakthrough. "I caught a glimpse," he sings. "I'm going after it."