Express & Star

Tame Impala, The Slow Rush - album review

Tame Impala - AKA Kevin Parker - is back with his fourth record The Slow Rush, and its as breezy and airy as he has ever sounded.

The album cover for Tame Impala's The Slow Rush

It's blue-sky music, recorded between LA and his hometown of Fremantle in Australia, and was recorded, produced and mixed by the man himself.

Go straight in with the second track Instant Destiny and this is what the record is about in a nutshell. High-pitched, masked and almost hushed vocals above sun-kissed and dreamscape melodies that carry the listener rather than push them anywhere. It's like floating in a vast ocean while the daytime version of the Northern Lights full of pinks and pastel colours explodes like fireworks before your eyes.

More coverage:

And the light show never really relents.

Tomorrow's Dust sounds a little more like a Pharrell track with that upbeat percussion tickling it from behind with the largest of feather dusters. But it still fits the mould with that bright and breezy nature, like a young teenager putting their plans for the summer holidays in their diary like a mahoosive to-do list.

The beats do get a little heavier on occasion to add some oomph to the sound. Is it True thumps from the sides like a pet playfully trying to get you up of the sofa to play with them. Just a little nudge that won't get them in trouble for being too boisterous and knocking over that half-finished cuppa on the floor.

Posthumous Forgiveness follows the template of the former, but with the pace dialled down a notch. Here, the pre-chorus instrumentals bend the realms of psychedelic pop with those zinging synths that disorientate and amaze in equal measure.

Australia's Tame Impala

But perhaps one criticism you could aim at this inventive and boundary-pushing collection is that it can be enjoyed more as accompanying music to another activity rather than gripping the listener in place from start to finish. This is accentuated by the changes mid-track to something altogether different.

Sat still it is slightly off-putting, like something has gone wrong with the copy you are listening to. But to the moving listener it just melds into yet another song-change.

Top marks for ingenuity, but it's a little too light to hold the attention for its full 57-and-a-half-minute run-time.

Rating: 6/10

Tame Impala is believed to be lining up UK tour dates at a later date