His name is Neil Krug. You can admire his cool fashion eye or the stunning works with liquid and sharp mountains surrounded by astonishing sky. He uses hyperrealism to remake our reality into colourful surrealistic dreams. Just have a look at the brand new artwork for Tame Impala’s new album with a beautiful name The Slow Rush — in Kevin Parker’s words, a “deep dive into the oceans of time.”
It’s not just a desert fantasy reminding us of the best record sleeves by the legendary Storm Thorgerson. In its core, it’s still photography saturated with lovely daydreaming — in this case, a shot from Kolmanskop, an old German ghost town in the Namib desert which, at the beginning of 20th century, was an oasis for diamond miners.
The place was supposed to serve as a proper working-class town with residential houses, a school, casino or even the first tramway system in Africa. Of course, World War II was a crucial moment for the whole area. The diamond field was depleted and the town was ultimately abandoned in 1956. But even James Bond knows that diamonds are forever.
Nowadays, Kolmanskop is a favourite destination for Instagram geeks. All the buildings are covered with a beautiful sand blanket and literally everything feels almost like in a dream — a mysterious lost city in the diamond heart of the Namibian desert, a forgotten post-apocalyptic landscape.
It’s not just about the stylised film atmosphere or a phenomenon of abandoned architectural monuments. It’s also about a piece of hidden history with a twisted ending. All these images are perfect visual synonyms for Tame Impala’s music which also creates such extraordinary and psychedelic (audio-visual) landscapes.
“The album cover features a symbol of humanity all but swallowed whole by the surrounding environment, as though in the blink of an eye,” writes Neil Krug about his album sleeve. Trust him and be prepared for the final deep dive. It’s going to be strange, nostalgic but also revealing and inspiring.