Review: Tame Impala proves that greatness can’t be rushed

His first album in five years brings smoother sounds than ever before

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Despite multiple delays, Kevin Parker’s fine-tuning perfectionism birthed a masterpiece.

Kevin Parker has come a long way in the past ten years. He began recording in his basement in 2010, simply trying to create a new sound for others to enjoy. Over the past decade, an idea exploded beyond his imagination.

Since 2010’s “InnerSpeaker,” Parker and his touring act, Tame Impala, have collaborated with the likes of Lady Gaga, A$AP Rocky, Kanye West and Mark Ronson. Dozens of festivals were headlined, including Coachella in 2019.

While Parker hoped to have the album completed in time for their headlining Coachella appearance, the decision was made to delay the project indefinitely in hopes of tinkering production until it reached perfection in his eyes.

With the release of “The Slow Rush” finally upon us, it’s safe to say that the wait was an excellent decision that paid off in his fans’ eyes. At a length of 57 minutes (his longest album yet), Parker sings smooth melodies over slick production, like an artist bringing beautiful strokes of paint to his next masterpiece.

The previously mentioned melodies and production bear a certain groove and funk that would be successful if it were released at any time in the past six decades. Whether the album was released in the 1960’s “Peace Era” or the 1980s with other smooth pop anthems, “The Slow Rush” is transcendent through time.

As the sound comes across as timeless, there are multiple reasons as to why this specific sound brings something to every generation. Parker has always been open about his use of psychedelics during the writing and recording process, stating that many of his newest songs are reminiscent of the first time he consumed ecstasy.

Speaking of time, that also seems to represent the primary thematic element of the album. Parker acknowledges throughout the album that time slips from his grip more often than he wishes it to. Between the five year gap since his last LP “Currents” and having been recently married with kids likely impending, he alludes to his struggle with perfectionism and time passing by.

While many will surely enjoy the themes and sounds that come from this album, a potentially larger population may not. His sound is specific and isn’t fully recognized by mainstream radio. However, if a listener has enjoyed Tame Impala’s music in the past, they are sure to have this on repeat for years to come.

After all these years, “The Slow Rush” was most definitely worth the wait. Constant tweaking and tinkering ensured the album was a progressive sound with no filler. While many won’t appreciate the sound, others are likely to have this on their year-end favorite album lists.

As fans soak in the new summer music and slow vibes, they should be prepared for another extensive, multi-year wait for the next full-length project. With Parker being nothing short of a perfectionist and genius, it’s safe to say that the next wait should be well worth it.

Review: 4/5

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