Metascore
84

Universal acclaim - based on 38 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 38
  2. Negative: 0 out of 38
Buy On
  1. Jul 16, 2015
    100
    The whole thing has a beautiful and unexpected tenderness to it.
  2. Jul 16, 2015
    100
    Like all great psychedelic music, it perfectly evokes a deeply weird altered state, albeit that of a head wrecked by grief rather than lysergic acid diethylamide.
  3. Ditching the psychedelic rock for an album that mines from disco, synth-pop and R&B in equal measure is a move that is sure to alienate some of the Tame Impala fan base, but the fact that Kevin was able to stretch himself into this kind of new territory is undeniably a feat in its own right. It's just icing on the cake that Currents also happens to rival Lonerism as Tame Impala's masterpiece.
  4. Jul 14, 2015
    94
    Currents is a record you should be excited for, paying attention to and ready to consider the best of the year.
  5. Jul 13, 2015
    93
    Nearly every proper song on Currents is a revelatory statement of Parker’s range and increasing expertise as a producer, arranger, songwriter, and vocalist while maintaining the essence of Tame Impala.
  6. 91
    There’s a new kind of richness to frontman Kevin Parker’s lonely-astronaut experiments.
  7. 91
    Currents is all about the wide lens. It’s not the landscape worth falling in love with, but the way Parker gives us a tour. Let it happen, and it will carry you off somewhere much further away than you realized was worth visiting.
  8. Jul 27, 2015
    90
    His synth work on this record is nothing short of remarkable, and his ability as a producer is further enhanced to a level at which he has no contemporaries. Parker is a once-in-a-generation talent, and this album is conclusive evidence of it.
  9. Jul 20, 2015
    90
    This is as close to pop perfection as music as seen in quite some time.
  10. Jul 16, 2015
    90
    It's too early to say if Currents will be the masterpiece that Kevin Parker is remembered for, but not too early to state that this is his best LP yet, a near-perfect album in a body of already remarkably impressive works.
  11. Jul 13, 2015
    90
    The real magic of Currents, though, is in how Parker so effectively (and genuinely, for the most part) manipulates the listener’s emotions without necessarily revealing any himself.
  12. Jul 30, 2015
    89
    Danceable grooves and R&B beats heighten the disc's eclectic imagination.
  13. 85
    This is Parker's strongest bunch of songs yet.
  14. Jul 17, 2015
    83
    Currents isn’t quite that [masterpiece] album, but it’s an enthralling listen nonetheless.
  15. 83
    Currents is a consummate grower, in part the musical evolution is overwhelming.
  16. Jul 27, 2015
    80
    It is sparkling and wistful, and it's quite lovely.
  17. Jul 22, 2015
    80
    A satisfying diversion in the flow of two styles of classic music previously at odds with one another.
  18. Jul 20, 2015
    80
    Although Currents is, in many ways, a showcase of difference (from his previous guitar-driven efforts, from some previous influences, even from other recently successful forays into disco-pop such as Daft Punk's Random Access Memories), Parker also toys with repetition as a unifying theme, sonically and lyrically.
  19. Jul 17, 2015
    80
    Despite the great weight of hype, Tame Impala have evolved into a satisfyingly altered form, both alien and humming.
  20. Jul 17, 2015
    80
    It might not hit with the sit-up-and-listen immediacy of previous albums, but make no mistake, Currents is just as accomplished.
  21. Jul 16, 2015
    80
    You can feel the giddy fun Parker was clearly having in the studio.
  22. Jul 16, 2015
    80
    Accept the new sonic realities and you'll find plenty to love.
  23. Jul 15, 2015
    80
    Currents is a tour de force for the songwriter and his gizmos. But it’s also decidedly hermetic, nearly airless.
  24. Jul 15, 2015
    80
    Currents is melodic, pretty, but there's a pervasive sense of melancholy here; each uplifting track feels as though it's masking sorrow with shimmering synth, a teaspoon of sugar to help the medicine down.
  25. Jul 13, 2015
    80
    This is a record that demands your reflection and immersion, rather than just mindlessly wigging out.
  26. Mojo
    Jul 6, 2015
    80
    These sings might inhabit unsteady mental states, but each component could have been places with tweezers and a jeweller's loupe. [Aug 2015, p.86]
  27. Uncut
    Jul 2, 2015
    80
    Currents may be equally exhilarating to any listener willing to adjust to Tame Impala's new paradigm. [Aug 2015, p.65]
  28. From the crisp, hip-hop accenting on the drums to the full-bodied bass and vivd synths, Currents is an audiophile’s wet dream.
  29. Q Magazine
    Jul 2, 2015
    80
    This is Parker's finest achievement yet, with the lavish soundscapes and dense atmospherics often anchored with undeniably catchy hooks. [Aug 2015, p.102]
  30. Jul 13, 2015
    75
    Though still dense and detailed in a way that lives up to Parker's reputation as an obsessive studio hermit, Currents also feels more spacious and danceable in its finest moments.
  31. Jul 21, 2015
    70
    For those that are willing to kiss goodbye to the guitars and join Parker on his latest detour, you’re likely to get swept away by the dreaminess of Currents. It’s just a shame that the undeniable majesty of opener Let It Happen sees the album peak at a high it can never hope to reach for the remainder of its existence.
  32. Jul 17, 2015
    70
    Often on Currents it feels like you've camped out in a middle spot at a festival, halfway between a mainstage rock headliner and the dance tent.
  33. 70
    With Parker’s voice haloed in reverb, some of it sounds great, especially eight-minute epic Let It Happen and the gorgeous ’Cause I’m A Man. But quite what his regular audience will make of this change in direction is another matter entirely.
  34. Jul 20, 2015
    60
    Currents details a painful rebirth, but you’d never guess as much.
  35. Jul 16, 2015
    60
    While Currents would have made a decent Kevin Parker solo album, people coming to the album and expecting to hear the Tame Impala they are used to will most likely end up quite disappointed.
  36. Jul 15, 2015
    60
    It’s reductive and doesn’t help really anyone by saying the hooks just aren’t there on the level they used to be, but it’s telling that I searched the rest of Currents in vain for anything as immediate as the crashing waterfall of multitracked vocals on the chorus to “The Moment.”
  37. 60
    While copious application of phasing offers a link to Tame Impala’s psychedelic roots, the absence of guitar wig-outs may disappoint some fans.
  38. Jul 13, 2015
    40
    The most frustrating thing about Currents is that, for probably the first time, it seems like Parker is writing songs that would be pretty decent and probably interesting if he freed them from this musty aesthetic and gave them room to express themselves.
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 538 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 15 out of 538
  1. Jul 22, 2015
    10
    The funny thing with most of the nay-sayers of this record is that they say that Currents is far removed from the psych-pop/rock of the firstThe funny thing with most of the nay-sayers of this record is that they say that Currents is far removed from the psych-pop/rock of the first two records and that surely Kevin Parker (KP) knew he would piss off some their hardcore fans but I personally feel that this record feels like the most natural progression of Tame Impala.

    Inner Speaker, the first record, was a pure psych-pop/rock record but even then you could already tell that KP had a thing for pop melodies and writing catchy songs. Lonerism, their second record, already took quite a bit of the psych out but there was still enough of it to sooth the psych fans.

    Currents takes pretty much all the psych out of Tame Impala and leaves us with one of the best pop records in a long while and KP wanted that exactly. It wasn't a decision to cash in or to change direction but something he's been working towards with the two previous records.

    But KP says it best on the final track of the record itself:

    "I can just hear them now
    "How could you let us down?"
    But they don't know what I found
    Or see it from this way around
    Feeling it overtake
    All that I used to hate

    Finally taking flight
    I know you don't think it's right
    I know that you think it's fake
    Maybe fake's what I like"

    Deal with it kids!!
    Full Review »
  2. Jul 18, 2015
    4
    I've always had a kind of love/hate opinion of this band. The bubble wrapped psych pop of their last two albums, which sounds identical to theI've always had a kind of love/hate opinion of this band. The bubble wrapped psych pop of their last two albums, which sounds identical to the beatles, has fit happily inside my guilty pleasures cabinet. Unfortunately this time around, the tracks are bad, often embarrassing. "Past Life" is an awful song featuring a sleazy, modulated vocal monologue in a soup of poorly auto-tuned songs (They don't even bother cleaning up the vocals by the time Love/Paranoia comes around). Throughout, his dry falsetto has lost any sense of personality or emotion. Hiccuping - track-skipping effects like on the first two tracks seem to try and warp the space around these soulless tunes add some texture.

    A lot of tracks repeat the trick of dazzling you with some bite-size soaring hook only to repeat it a bunch of times until it's ridden into the ground.. kinda like slowly drinking a can of sugar-free orange soda. That aftertaste just keeps ruining whatever good ideas are here (and there are a few).

    The aesthetic is not the psych pop of yesteryear, rather it's this kind of shoegazy-lazy-schmaltzy-glitzy contemporary electro-indie-dance stuff that's humiliating to try and dance along to. Caribou did it too, Panda Bear did it too - I still like all these bands but it's getting to that point in the relationship where i'm doing a lot of rationalizing just to keep things going. Could be I'm just not on the same drugs they are.
    Full Review »
  3. Jul 17, 2015
    10
    although I love Lonerism, can't say I miss their guitars here. just in love with the new direction. best album of the year and totally analthough I love Lonerism, can't say I miss their guitars here. just in love with the new direction. best album of the year and totally an audiophile's wet dream. Full Review »