Review by Shannon Shumaker
I Remembered but Then I Forgot is just about as diverse as you can get from an indie/acoustic album, and in the best way possible. From warm, inviting acoustic tracks, to angry, haunting songs, to softer ballads and even more, I Remembered but Then I Forgot showcases just about every single side of Wolfie’s Just Fine and then some. Lyrically, I Remembered but Then I Forgot is smart and flows with ease, and vocally, Jon Lajoie is absolutely at his best, with raw, powerful vocals spearheading much of the album.
I Remembered but Then I Forgot starts off on a very warm and inviting note with raw, soulful vocals on the opening track, “It’s a Job.” Perfect for long drives, “It’s a Job” just feels like summertime, with soothing, easy going guitar work and soft backing vocals that contrast beautifully with the leads. For those unfamiliar with Lajoie, it would be easy to assume that the rest of the album will feel like “It’s a Job,” but thankfully, the second track, “I Forgot” shakes things up almost immediately. With a tense, dark mood and even darker vocals, “I Forgot” is absolutely stunning, but for the opposite reason that “It’s a Job” is such a strong opener.
Then, “Pigeon Lady” shows us a softer side of Wolfie’s Just Fine, and just like that, the album has already thrown you through many different, unexpected changes, and you’re only three songs deep. And the best part is, “It’s a Job,” “I Forgot” and “Pigeon Lady” are all powerful, captivating and beautiful, but all for different reasons.
“Todd And Janelle” follows “Pigeon Lady” with a very upbeat and full sound, keeping things from slowing down or becoming boring after the quiet third song. By the time this fourth track comes in, it’s apparent that Lajoie knows how to keep listeners both captivated and on their toes. And the best part? Even with the constantly changing sounds, I Remembered but Then I Forgot flows with ease. Never once does it feel disjointed or choppy. Following “Todd And Janelle” is the more stripped down “A New Beginning.” But it would be out of character for Wolfie’s Just Fine to give us just a simple acoustic track. There isn’t a dull moment on “A New Beginning.” Not only do the lyrics paint a vivid picture, but the vocal harmonies are absolutely stunning, and the song just grows and grows and it moves forward. The drums and backing vocals at the end of the song are not only its strongest aspect, but they make it feel very full and big before it comes to a surprisingly quiet ending.
Picking up the pace are “Everything Is Happening Right Now” and “Better You,” which are easily two of the most upbeat tracks on the album. Carried by strong drumming and piano, “Better You” is also one of the fuller songs on I Remembered but Then I Forgot, making it stand out from the pack. Then, I Remembered but Then I Forgot comes to a big ending with the final two tracks, “Marie-Eve” and “Running from my Savior.” On the quieter side, “Marie-Eve” slows things down before the inspirational and massive final song, “Running from my Savior.” Much like “A New Beginning,” the final track just grows and grows before coming to an end, complete with stunning guitar work, captivating vocals and lyrics that drive the story home. Alone, each song on I Remembered but Then I Forgot is strong, carried by smart lyricism and beautiful songwriting, but together they are even stronger, creating an incredibly diverse release that feels like a journey from start to finish.
Listen to "A New Beginning" or "Better You"
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