Tame Impala was Lit. (Courtesy of Roger Echegoyen)

Tame Impala was Lit. (Photo Courtesy of Roger S. Echegoyen)

By Gabe Wanissian, Editor-in-Chief

“This may not be a big deal to you guys, But being here is pretty f***ing special for us,” uttered Tame Impala frontman Kevin Parker in front of the raucous fans that packed in the historic Radio City Music Hall. When the Aussie band finally returned for an encore to thunderous applause, 6000+ fans consisting of as many 18-year-olds as there were “Deadheads” from the 70’s let the Aussie rock band just how wrong they were.

Fresh off the release of their critically acclaimed album, Currents, the psychedelic band chose the Big Apple to be the final stop for their 2015 tour. Sandwiched between an appearance on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” and a much more rowdy Terminal 5 concert the day after, the sold out Radio City Music Hall show would be the grandiose performance declaring their arrival to the big stage.

The classy seated venue would not be able to subdue the fan base, as they would be on their feet the entire duration of the night. Puffs of smoke emanated from the crowd, which was quite a bizarre sight since the orchestral location hosts family friendly Christmas shows.

The trippy factor escalated to full force even prior to the band’s performance, as Psych Pop Oddity LA Priest came on put on a one man show. Fans were still filing into their seats at the time, but for those that listened, the synth heavy production and clever use of vocal distortions came as a pleasant unknown surprise for many.

But the crowd had been there to have Kevin Parker and Co. melt their brains, and once they took the stage, they had wasted no time by jumping into  “Let it Happen,” a 7 minute trip of pure psychedelia.

The set list consisted of many of the band’s favorites, some of their newer work, and as well as some deeper cuts dating back to their 2010 LP “Innerspeaker.” The wide mix provided variety, almost too much so – as the hazy 60’s rock “Innerspeaker” tracks opposing the Funky 80’s Prince-esque sounding tracks from Currents made it feel as if the concert itself didn’t know what mood it wanted to be in. Does it want to be an all out rave with catchy grooves and mesmerizing light shows, or a more hypnotic and chilled out rock concert? Tame Impala opts for a hybridization of both.

The sublime production made by Parker, a selfadmitted ‘perfectionist’ surprisingly comes off just as good, if not better at times in the live setting. The wavey synths and groovy bass lines had many of the audience nearly turn the 80-year-old concert hall into a club, but tracks with heavy guitar riffs such as “Elephant” served as a reminder of the bands rock roots.

“This place is too cool to be in one place,” said Parker during Drummer Julien Barbagallo’s five minute drum freestyle, to which he ended up literally climbing up to the balcony. It was one of the few times during the show that the band ceased their music playing to interact with the audience. Perhaps Parker was trying to erase his “Lonerisms” to bask in the crowd’s adulation. Instead of entering the sea of people, Parker admired the view from a distance; it’s going to take time for the band to embrace their stardom.

The Torch gives the concert 4 out of 5 stars

Set List:

Let It Happen

Mind Mischief

Why Won’t They Talk To Me?

The Moment

It Is Not Meant To Be


The Less I Know The Better


Why Won’t You Make Up Your Mind?

‘Cause I’m A Man

Alter Ego

Apocalypse Dreams


Feels Like We Only Go Backwards

Nothing That Has Happened So Far Has Been Anything We Could Control