Saturday, July 02, 2022

Tourist’s fourth studio album ‘Inside Out’ talks of love, loss and finding comfort in both

Inside Out’, Tourist’s fourth studio album released May 20th, is centred around the death of a close friend and about finding comfort in grieving - whilst also being made in the midst of the pandemic.

The album is tinged with emotional chords, synths, textures and pads throughout, which evokes nostalgic and compelling feelings.

Each track feels almost cinematic, as it builds and takes us on a sonically pleasing journey. The songs flow together naturally and fade into each other, almost “speak[ing] in symphony”.

Starting with a climatic song, this album moves to ‘Your Love’, an upbeat dance track, and then to ‘Avalanche’, a chill UK Garage track, featuring Ellie Goulding’s vocals. ‘With You’ is the next song with punchy drums, vibrant chords and vocal samples sprinkled throughout.

Halfway through the album is ‘A Dedication’ which is “about the unspoken words between people”. This moves to ‘April’ which references the “month in which it was written and also when everything really fell apart”, and holds a sadder and a more sentimental tone, using instrumentals to elicit this. Next is ‘We Thought You Were Sleeping’ which sounds hopeful and happy, but the lyrics contradict this by being stained with sadness. ‘Lark’ follows with dreamy breaks, beat drops and synths throughout and this leads to ‘Silent Letter’ with heavy vocal samples and head bopping drums. The last song is ‘Eternal’ which suggests, in a metaphorical way, that their friendship is everlasting.

Your Love’, released March 22nd, is the centrepiece song of the album. It is upbeat with a 128 bpm and is written in C major, helping the listener feel joyful and hopefully want to get up and dance. Being the second song on the album, it truly helps to set the tone and the mood for the listener.

The album cover photo (taken by Jamie Hawkesworth) reflects the idea of looking back whilst moving forward; this pairs well with the theme of the album of grieving whilst healing and finding comfort at the same time. The image shows a fleeting moment, which feels nostalgic and hopeful. The vibrant colours and graininess lend themselves to the richness of each track on the album, oozing saturated texture.

Tourist has taken a tragedy in his life and turned it into a beautiful piece of art, and helps the listener find comfort and heal through his music. The album feels like a reassuring hug, made with emotion and care, and pushes the boundaries sonically of Tourist’s previous work. It will be exciting to see what Tourist produces next and what themes he will explore, but until then, let’s appreciate the beauty that is ‘Inside Out’.

Emily Bundock

Image: ‘Inside Out’ Official Album Cover

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