Tame Impala – The Slow Rush (Album Review)

Tame Impala – The Slow Rush (Album Review)

One of the more interesting acts to emerge in the 2010s Indie Rock scene is the psychedelic music project Tame Impala. Although not actually a band, but rather an individual artist, conceived in Perth, Australia, back in 2007 by the Multi-instrumentalist Kevin Parker, Tame Impala has managed to persevere over time.

Yes, during live performances, Tame Impala employs session players; but in the studio, Parker does everything singlehandedly – from vocals and all instruments to the production. A unique project, Parker has released four studio LPs as Tame Impala to boast of, from 2010’s Innerspeaker to the newest offering, The Slow Rush.

A follow-up to 2015’s Grammy nominated and critically-acclaimed Currents, The Slow Rush hit the public on Friday, February 14th, 2020 via Interscope. Consisting of 12 songs at just under an hour of music and, of course, produced by Parker himself, The Slow Rush opens with the tranquilizing, flickering flight of “One More Year.” From here it shifts suddenly to the mirrorball Disco, sensual swing and stomp of “Instant Destiny” before the single “Borderline.”

The mood then drops yet again with the melodramatic Trance-worthy track “Posthumous Forgiveness” before exuding a Trip Hop, dirge-like sentiment akin to Portishead’s “Sour Times” and Massive Attack’s “Teardrop.” This is something which is aptly emotional, for it is Parker’s “reckoning with his deceased father and a cathartic rumination of their complicated relationship.”

Moving along, “Breathe Deeper” then confidently bounces out of the loudspeakers in a subtle loop, whereas “Tomorrow’s Dust” crawls smoothly with its catchy guitar plucks; the initiated will hear glittery and textured echoes of Arcade Fire’s “Everything Now.” Tame Impala then treats the listener once again with the mind-numbing soundscape and lovelorn croon of “On Track.” This is then followed by the latest single, “Lost in Yesterday,” a slide to the slick surrealism of Sophistipop before the funk and groove of “Is It True?”

Yet another relaxing track plays next in the form of the synth angularity of “It Might Be Time.” However, the adrenaline then rushes onto the dance-floor with the shimmering and hypnotic flare of “Glimmer.” Finally, Tame Impala closes The Slow Rush with the ’80s Synthpop/Dreampop combo of “One More Hour.”

In the often guitar-oriented Indie Rock scene, Tame Impala’s latest offering is indeed a breeze of synth air and a perfectly tame alternative to a usually angst-driven Rock album. That is why Cryptic Rock gives The Slow Rush 4 out of 5 stars.

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aLfie vera mella
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Born in 1971, in Metro Manila, Philippines, aLfie vera mella is a healthcare worker, singer/songwriter, and editor/writer. He was the frontman of the ’90s-peaking Philippine Alternative Rock / New Wave band Half Life Half Death, which released a full-length album and several singles on Viva Records. aLfie worked at Diwa Scholastic Press as an editor/writer of academic textbooks and supplementary magazines, focusing on Science & Technology and English Grammar & Literature. In 2003, aLfie migrated to Canada; he has since been living in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He works full-time at a healthcare institution, while serving as the associate contributing editor of Filipino Journal—a local community newspaper in Winnipeg—tackling Literature, Languages, Cultures, Lifestyles, and Music. aLfie has been a music journalist since the mid-’90s for various print magazines as well as websites. He started writing album reviews for Cryptic Rock in 2015. In 2016, aLfie published Part One (Literature & Languages and Their Cultural Significance) of his Essay Series, Can You Hear the Sound of a Falling Leaf?; in 2021, his first book of poetry, Pag-íhip sa Dáhon ng Kahápon [Blowing Leaves of Yesterday]. In his spare time, he enjoys reading books and listening to music. aLfie is a dedicated father to his now 13-year-old son, Evawwen; and a loving husband to Kathryn Mella, who herself moonlights also as a writer aside from holding a degree in Bachelor of Arts, Major in Sociology.

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