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TWO JEWS CHEW ON
THE GRAMMYS
Pass me a knish. (5/24a)
SONY STARS SET
HITS LIST ABLAZE
They're fire. (5/24a)
THE IVORS 2019: ALL THE WINNERS
Theresa May wasn't even on the shortlist. (5/24a)
CROSSCURRENTS: HITSVILLE USA
A Berry important chapter of the story (5/24a)
SONG REVENUE CHART: PLAYOFF FEVER
We're in a generational moment. (5/24a)
THE DIVA PLAN
How pop stars from the pre-streaming era are finding a new groove.
RAINMAKERS RETURN
More of the folks who are making biz history now.
THE FUTURE OF ROCK & ROLL IS...
Hang on, we just need to throw this TV out the window.
AFTER COUNTRY TRAP
Is reggaeton death metal far behind?
Critics' Choice
DID YOU MISS THIS, GRAMMY VOTERS? TAME IMPALA, CURRENTS
11/17/15



Currents
(Interscope), created solely by Kevin Parker, is a headphone masterpiece that also contains the 29-year-old auteur’s hookiest songs—“The Moment” (for which he appropriates the iconic beat of Tears for Fears’ “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”); the testifying soul ballad “’Cause I’m a Man,” “Eventually” (a fusion of Gamble & Huff, The Beatles and Brian Wilson) and “The Less I Know the Better,” which opens and is powered by a delectable bassline hook (employed by Apple in an iPhone 6s TV campaign)—as well as his strongest, most nuanced singing. But what’s most strikingly different about this Tame Impala LP is Parker’s wholesale use of synthesizers.

The sonic wrinkle—massive, live-sounding bass and drums bringing a distinctly human rhythmic feel to his intricately manipulated psychedelic/EDM soundscapes—was deftly employed by Daft Punk on Random Access Memories—but here the synths are playing arena-rock guitar lines. (There are also actual guitars, despite the initial impression, but they’re hiding in plain sight, so to speak.) Is Parker actually pulling off what Todd Rundgren has been trying to achieve with his electronic experiments in recent years? He’s cited Todd as an inspiration, and this record feels very much like Parker’s Something/Anything?, with “Eventually” serving as its “Hello, It’s Me.” —Bud Scoppa