Tame Impala | Currents | Pitchblack Playback Review

The Institute Of Light | 18th September 2018

Pitchblack Playback is a captivating way to hear your favourite albums uninterrupted. This time, at the Institute of Light in Hackney (a kind of cinema with excellent, aircraft interior decor displayed in the adjacent bar), fans are able to listen to Tame Impala's breakthrough album, Currents, which was written, recorded, performed and produced by Kevin Parker, Tame Impala's creator, all in his home studio in Australia.

Written by Alex Hanrahan, Contributor.

Written by Alex Hanrahan, Contributor.

Surrounded by the venue's set of 18 surround sound 10,000 watt speakers, eager audiophiles listen to the album in its entirety in total darkness. The experience provides an almost hallucinogenic way to get immersed in a record; listeners are permitted to isolate parts they love or discover subtleties they may have never heard before.

The added option of blindfolds are an underestimated addition which transport the subject away from the room - as the climax of ‘Yes I'm Changing’ echoes out, the samples and snippets of city hustle and bustle combined with the warmth of the room painted a picture of walking around a busy London with the sun fiercely beating down.

Not only does the idea of Pitchblack Playback appeal to those wholly into the music, it’s also a great opportunity to meet new people who are into music and have the same favourite artists/albums as you - the students seated across take great pride in raving about Currents and go into detail about how it’s best listened to on drugs after a particularly wild night - especially for first time listeners.

A short interview from Parker before the album plays reveals what the intentions and influences were for the album, but one can’t help but think a good addition could have been to include the B-sides for this album - 'List Of People (To Try And Forget About)’, 'Powerlines’ and ‘Taxi's Here' from the Currents collectors edition, to get a full insight into what Kevin's visions were for the record and which hidden gems there were that didn't quite make it initially.