Addie Dawson gives a song-by-song overview of Tame Impala's latest album "The Slow Rush." (Graphic by Noah Hedges )
Addie Dawson gives a song-by-song overview of Tame Impala's latest album "The Slow Rush."

Graphic by Noah Hedges

“The Slow Rush” Is Finally Over

Tame Impala's Fourth Album is Broken Down, Analyzed for Portrayal of Artist's Life

February 28, 2020

The mind of Tame Impala’s genius, Australian artist Kevin Parker, released his fourth album “The Slow Rush” on Feb. 14, a highly anticipated album by fans everywhere. The album title itself expresses the purpose behind the album’s story and inspiration; the familiar human battle against time and the impact of memory. Given the groovy, upbeat tempo of Tame’s previous albums, “The Slow Rush and its mix of funky beats and haunting lulls are surprisingly chilling as Parker brings listeners on a trip through his recalling of memories while recognizing the present and looking toward the future. 

Parker creates an album that starts from the beginning of a story; a time in which he struggles to let go of the past and doubts that prevent him from living his life to the fullest. The tone in “One More Year,” the first song on the album,  is one of uncertainty and longing for a past with a person he cares for, Parker beginning to invite the feeling of freedom and lack of care in his actions.

“Instant Destiny” solidifies the careless attitude that Parker embraces toward his life, stating that he’s “about to do something crazy” in the first line of the song. The optimistic, breezy tone represents his anticipation for the next half of his life, now getting to share it with a life-long partner. 

The third song on the album titled “Borderline” acts as the chapter after the decision of recklessness. For instance, the first few lines of the song state that Parker has “gone a little far this time with something [in his life],” questioning, like anyone would do, what he has gotten himself into in terms of marriage and the commitment of that matrimony. He asks himself, “will I be known and loved?” a common question among us all, especially pertaining to the future of one’s life. 

The next song on the album, “Posthumous Forgiveness” addresses Parker’s past demons, hinting that his father is the focus of the words by stating, “There was time to recover/ One-on-one with each other/ Just a boy and a father/ What I’d give for another.” Parker lets out his anger toward his late father and his lack of apologetic empathy for his wrongdoings during Parker’s upbringing. By the end of the song, he reminisces on the things that he wishes he would have shared with his father, like having “Mick Jagger on the phone,” playing his music for his father and “[hearing his] voice sing along.” 

The next song sounds like Parker is defending his growth and individuality toward one who might’ve questioned his relapse of regret in the last song. He holds his ground on the question whether he can “hold his own” by simply repeating, “believe me, I can, believe me, I can.” He uses a groovy 70s beat to express his readiness to move on from the past and let loose again in life. In the last few lines, Parker addresses his significant other and prompts her to “breathe a little deeper” while they brace for life’s heavy impact. 

“Tomorrow’s Dust” allows Parker’s poetic talents to be showcased, the lyrics of the soft song flow through relatable doubts of the mind and regretful self-reflection of past actions. The song takes a step back in the process of moving on from the past, Parker repeating that “in the air of today is tomorrow’s dust” and expressing fears of making the same mistakes in his life. 

The next song, “On Track” continues the chronological order in which the songs are listed and completely rebuttals the previous song’s regretful tone. Parker picks up the beat in this song, representing his change of attitude toward his situation, stating that he’s “still on track,” despite the mental setback portrayed in the previous song. 

The story of Parker’s breakthrough continues in the next song titled “Lost in Yesterday,” one of the pre-released tracks. He uses multiple rhetorical questions in the break of this song, asking himself things like “so what was I ever afraid of?” and “why did I worry?” in order to create distance from the past as it pertains to the future. The lighthearted tone calls out those fears of the past, demanding listeners who are visited by past regrets to “embrace them” and “erase them.” 

“Is It True” introduces the inevitable wave of doubt that associates itself with love and commitment, emotions felt by Parker in his life and inspirations for this album. He tells about a moment when he confesses his care for his lover and the questioning of sincerity of it by her. During this moment, he contemplates the feeling he holds for her and attempts to separate love from lust. Parker suggests his struggle with the expression of emotion toward his significant other, and by the end of the song settles upon the fact that there is time to discover if love is what is being felt. 

The next song titled “It Might Be Time” expresses Parker’s acceptance of the time that has past, pointing out that “it ain’t as fun as it used to be.” He speaks about how he feels behind in the process of maturity and meeting the standards of a “successful” adult, noting that “nothing lasts forever” repeatedly, attempting to justify his lack of care for the things that he should, yet wrestling with the fact that things are changing. He comes to a conclusion by the end that “it might be time to face it,” meaning that it is time to accept the challenges of life that present themselves as people grow older. 

“Glimmer” gives a break to the steady flow of sharp beats and piano chords, the beat maintaining an even pace throughout the short two-minute song. The only lyrics that are spoken seem to fade in and out of the distance of the tune, repeating the fact that Parker “just wants a glimmer of hope.” This song sets the perfect scene for the ledge that listeners are left on at the end of the haunting tune, for the last song is a platform for which Parker takes the next steps in his life. 

“One More Hour” expresses Parker’s self-motivation for being better than he used to be at love and circumstances that pertain to it. The lyrics repeat the promise that Parker makes to himself to learn from the past by stating as long as he can “spend some time alone” and “remember who [he] is” that this time around will be more prosperous than the last. The hopeful tone represented in the song leaves readers with a sense of understanding and relation to Parker’s internal struggle with time and the battle to overcome past mistakes while taking lessons from them to apply to the present and future.

Overall, the album is one of the best released by Tame Impala, and it is projected to be part of festival headliners for years to come and definitely worth the listen. You can find the album on Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube.

 

About the Writer
Photo of Addie Dawson
Addie Dawson, Reporter

Addie Dawson is a senior and a first-year reporter. In addition to being a Wolfpack staff member, Addie is a student leader at the Friday night football games and loves to be a part of any and all school events. She enjoys writing about the student body and staff at CPHS as well as opinionated pieces about our culture and social norms. Addie plans to attend Texas State University in San Marcos to study English with an emphasis in Creative Writing. Addie proudly owns a bearded dragon named Clementine, loves the color yellow, and enjoys being the loudest one in the room.

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