Melody’s Echo Chamber: Melody’s Echo Chamber
Fat Possum Records / Domino
The fable goes that Melody Prochet approached Parker after a Tame Impala gig in order to discover the secrets of his guitar sound. She didn’t learn them. Instead, she got the gig the opening act for some of Tame Impala’s European dates where she and Parker swapped demos. The tale ends up in the share house of the Tame Impala in Perth where Parker produced this.
It’s a suitably offbeat immersive experience. Opener I Follow You sets the tone with something of a ‘50s pop vibe piped through modern production. Crystallized sends in little explosions for percussion, behind the guitar arpeggios. The vocals are washed out in much of the record, adding another melody line more than a lyrical base. It floats above the synths and behind the jangly guitar lines. When they are clear, it’s pure sing along goodness.
The album stretches some sonic borders under the charade of a pop record. Some tracks might indulge a bit too much in sonic experiments for some tastes, particularly as the record goes on, but they lead somewhere like back to the chorus, and as a whole the record pulls it off. These are not so much a series of pop songs but a whole landscape to chill out in, reminiscent of the first School Of Seven Bells album or most of the Cocteau Twin’s catalogue. There are touchstones of glam, folk, Serge Gainsbourg pop and psychedelic rock but the record is its own peculiar blend. And it all ends up as one of the more surprising and delightful albums of the second half of this year.
Written by Jason Kenny.