The Slow Rush by Tame Impala

“I’m being swept by this notion of time passing,” Kevin Parker explained to the New York Times about his new Tame Impala album earlier in 2019. “There’s something really intoxicating about it.” That preoccupation is at the centre of The Slow Rush, due for release on Valentine’s Day 2020 and 11 whole months after we got the first taste of new music ‘Borderline’ earlier this year. One of the most anticipated indie releases of recent years!

Limited Vinyl Double LP £25.25 846001

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Limited Vinyl Double LP £25.25 846007

Limited edition 180g red & light blue coloured vinyl 2LP on Fiction. Comes in a gatefold sleeve with A3 poster insert.

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The Slow Rush by Tame Impala
6 reviews. Write a review for us »
7/10 Will 13 February 2020

Kev. Kev Kev Kev Kev Kev Kev Kev. Little Kev. Our Kev. PsYcHeDeLiC Kev. What. A. Puzzle. Tame Impala are the Emile Heskey of the rock world - many detractors, a charming past I adore, a not-so-great recent past, and an uncertain future. Along with many others, I loved 'Innerspeaker' and 'Lonerism'. However, I was left cold by 201x's 'Currents'.

Anyway, Tame Impala have a new album out, it's called 'The Slow Rush' and here are my jumbled thoughts. 

There aren't enough differences between 'Currents' and 'The Slow Rush' for me to place it in the pantheon of great Tame Impala work, but there are enough for me to thankfully say that Kevin Parker might have got a bit of his moxie back. He's done this by really pushing the woozy psychedelic-disco aspect of this album. I love opener 'One More Year', with its autotuned vocals, dubby drum pattern and lethargic, syrupy atmosphere. I also liked Kev doing his best hype man impression: 'four seasons, one more year!'. 'Lost In Yesterday' has a cute arrangement that trips along, lending it the feel of a good Tears for Fears single. 

'It Might Be Time' is Kev sounding like his familiar old self, with a great disco-y rhodes riff and c r u n c h y drums. To be honest it pretty much saves the record. It's what Tame Impala do/does best - monster riffs, brilliant production, a gnarly guitar bit, and a killer hook ('IT MIGHT BE TIME TO FACE IT'). God it's good. Best thing he's done in years. 10/10. Closer 'One More Hour' is another banger, a tantalising taste of what the album could have been like, full of joyous pomp, excess, and camp grandiosity. 

At the risk of coming across like a wretched 2k14 no-hoper, sometimes I can't believe this is the same dude who made 'Elephant'. There are some songs on here which Friendly Fires would reject for being a little bland (don't pay Will any attention Friendly Fires, I still ride for you - (Fr)ed). There's good stuff here but it can be mired in this glassy, saccharine production. If Kev pushed the glassy, saccharine feel further and was a bit more aware of it, then it might be a funny, weird record, but it's just not. 

Now. Listen. I don't want you coming away with the impression that I don't like development in sound because many of my criticisms on reviews are gripes about artists that are mired in sonic stasis. I just think this new direction is a bit boring, bar a few notable exceptions. There are two good songs on 'The Slow Rush', one great one, and one truly superb corker. 

This album is less Tame Pimpala and more Tame Wimpala, but you know what? I'm looking forward to the next one. 

6/10 El Clinton 17th April 2020

For his first two albums Kevin Parker gave the impression that he would have stayed in his studio for the rest of his life just to perfect a cymbal sound. Since then his music sounds like it was made whilst waiting to clock off. 'The Slow Rush' continues previous album 'Currents' trajectory of replacing all the interesting bits with less interesting bits. Instead of recycling 60s psychedelics with modern day production techniques he is now trying to cement that perfect recreation of the production style of a 1986-era Whitney Houston B-side. The production is half assed but the songs seem ok - initially at least. If you want some sunny day tunes that do nothing to offend then there's a few here. He's pretty much perfected his falsetto - so much so than other than the opening track the vocals are near identikit throughout.

This was ok for soundtracking riding my bike during an escape from lockdown but here's the thing - it actually sounded worse on second listen. I want my Kevin Parker back. The madcap one. The one that took risks. He claims on 'Instant Destiny' - one of the more memorable tracks here - that he's about to do something crazy, but all this is is soft-as-sausage synth-led, slightly R&B styled slurp. Nothing here is crazy...or even all that interesting. It just sounds like a lot of other things.

9/10 Sarah Customer rating (no review), 8th May 2020
10/10 Rosemary Customer rating (no review), 17th April 2020
8/10 Tom Customer rating (no review), 12th March 2020
8/10 Sean Customer rating (no review), 6th March 2020



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