I’ve spilled quite a bit of virtual ink over the past decade — yes, decade — covering the Perth, Australia-born and-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, producer and JOVM mainstay Kevin Parker, the creative mastermind behind the critically acclaimed and commercially successful psych pop/synth pop project Tame Impala. Now, as you may recall Parker’s third album, 2015’s Currents was a critical and commercial breakthrough. Released to overwhelming and wide-ranging critical applause across the blogosphere and elsewhere, the album was Grammy-nominated, RIAA Gold-Certified effort that reflected a decided change in direction for Parker’s songwriting and sound: the material featured some of his most emotionally direct lyrics paired with an nuanced and textured sound that draw from psych rock, psych pop, prog rock, synth pop and R&B.
Slated for a February 14, 2020 release through Interscope Records, The Slow Rush reportedly conjures the feeling of a lifetime in a lightning bolt, of major milestones whizzing by you while you’re looking at your phone. Thematically, the album focuses on the rapid passing of time and the unending cycles of creation and destruction in life. “A lot of the songs carry this idea of time passing, of seeing your life flash before your eyes, being able to see clearly your life from this point onwards. I’m being swept by this notion of time passing. There’s something really intoxicating about it,” Parker told the New York Times last year.
Last year Parker released the first batch of new Tame Impala material in over four years — “Patience,” a decidedly upbeat banger that seamlessly bridged 90s house and 70s funk while being a thoughtful meditation on the cycles and phases of life and “Borderline” a blissed out, shimmering mid-tempo track with house music flourishes and a razor sharp hook. Unofficially, those two tracks were the first two singles off Parker’s long-awaited and highly-anticipated fourth album, The Slow Rush. Parker closed out last year with the release of “It Might Be Time,” a swaggering prog rock meets psych pop banger, centered around layers of shimmering synth arpeggios, thumping beats, an anthemic hook and Parker’s plaintive vocals.
The Slow Rush‘s fourth and latest single “Lost in Yesterday” is a woozy and hallucinogenic disco-tinged banger centered around a propulsive and sinuous bass line, shimmering synth arpeggios, tweeter and woofer rocking beats, a cathartic and soaring hook and Parker’s plaintive vocals. While sonically the song seems to continue a run of glistening and decidedly 80s inspired synth bangers, the song thematically finds Parker exploring time’s distorting effect on memories. Given enough time, nostalgia gives even the most embittering times in your life a bit of a rosy tinge, and a sense of purpose and meaning that you didn’t feel while experiencing it. At it s core, the song is a plea to break the urge to look back with rose colored glasses and live in the here and now.
Directed by Terri Timley, the directing duo of Ian Kibbey and Corey Creasey, the recently released video for “Lost in Yesterday” features Tame Impala’s Kevin Parker, starring as a wedding singer playing at a dismal and unhappy wedding ceremony. In a short period of time, that horrible wedding turns into a grand and euphoric ceremony that features Parker and a full backing band rocking a house full of happy revelers — but just in the fringes, the misery of the affair is there. Much like the song, the video is centered around the theme of how nostalgia can give the most embittering, most embarrassing, most hurtful times in your life a rosy tinge, and a sense of meaning and purpose — and at points make things seem better than what they were.