Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Google+ Share on Reddit Share on Pinterest Share on Linkedin Share on Tumblr Even in the current era of genre-defiant pop music, Yves Tumor has established themself as a major talent capable of traversing numerous styles within the span of a single song. Safe in the Hands of Love was a major breakthrough, blending art rock and the most experimental forms of modern pop into an album that celebrated its refusal to be pinned down. Heaven to a Tortured Mind only expands on this freewheeling energy. Soul, psychedelia and glam rock combine amid a soundscape of electronic flourishes to craft songs that are as smooth as they are daring and unpredictable, settling into grooves that can expand and shift at a moment’s notice. Opener “Gospel for a New Century” begins with a canned sample of harsh horns that sounds like a classic Wu-Tang track, all jagged edges even in its quotations. Yet the bassline underneath is warm and intoxicating, filling the space around the staccato beat with connective tissue that takes the edge off of the noise. Tumor’s vocals are equally inviting, even as they oscillate back and forth from promising to be all that a lover needs and acknowledging the impossibility of people always being there when one needs the other. The ease with which they juggle these contradictions, and even throw in some casual asides like a brief interpolation of The Doors’ “Light My Fire,” speaks to Tumor’s ever-growing skills as a lyricist and performer. Tumor foregrounds rock histrionics throughout the record, particularly the revved-up distortion of glam rock guitar. Riffs slash through songs with acidic brutality, adding an arena stomp to the R&B shuffle of “Medicine Burn” and the soulful funk of “Super Stars,” the latter of which always seems poised on the eruption of a swaggering solo but teasingly retreats back into its melody. “Asteroid Blues” places the bass front and center for a thunderous line filled with slaps and pops as sound effects shriek around it, and an echoing guitar pattern pings around squealing clarinet in “Identity Trade.” As the handful of remaining mainstream rockers (Bon Iver, Tame Impala) increasingly shift their sound toward gossamer-haze pop and hip-hop, it’s invigorating to hear someone actively take the reverse track and enthusiastically add rock tropes back into the mainstream. Elsewhere, Tumor flits between sounds both retro and futuristic. “Romanticist” feeds a syncopated R&B and smooth soul groove through electronics that spike them with groans and hiss. “Folie Imposée” shapes industrial shrieks into stop-start funk that periodically opens up into dubby chanted vocals. “Strawberry Privilege” is exactly as psychedelic as its title would suggest, leaving gulfs of space between cooed vocals, a fluttering bassline and tambourine-heavy percussion that allow details like canned flutes to waft through the center of the track. Remarkably, most of the songs barely make the three-minute mark, with some coming in at less than two. This compresses Tumor’s kaleidoscopic compositions to diamond density, fitting baffling pop symphonies into the length of an AM radio single with perhaps the greatest facility of anyone since Ariel Pink. That concision adds a punk streak through this electro-glam-soul odyssey, one that extends to a handful of guest vocals from women who roar as often as they croon. On “Dream Palette,” Tumor sings a sultry duet with Julia Cumming, who steamrolls him with a ragged scream that could give Courtney Love in her prime and run for her money, portraying all the wounded, terrified yearning of lines like “Our hearts are in danger / Tell me, is this confidential love?” Diana Gordon likewise splits vocal duties on the sprawling “Kerosene!” Once again, Tumor takes a backseat even when singing lead, using their own voice as a grounding element of calm that is burst when Gordon regularly veers into diva theatrics, her voice zigzagging upward toward heaven. At once providing showcases for their guests and weaving the other musicians’ voices into the album’s larger tapestry, Tumor proves to be a generous collaborator while consistently reinforcing their bold, singular vision.