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Maggie Rogers ensures that she’s not forgotten

Maggie+Rogers+released+her+newest+album%2C+%E2%80%9CDon%E2%80%99t+Forget+Me%2C%E2%80%9D+on+April+12%2C+featuring+a+personal+reflection+of+her+past%2C+present+and+the+future+that+is+held+in+store+for+her%2C+for+better+or+worse.+%0A
Courtesy of Debay Sounds LLC
Maggie Rogers released her newest album, “Don’t Forget Me,” on April 12, featuring a personal reflection of her past, present and the future that is held in store for her, for better or worse.

Maggie Rogers goes back to her past, both lyrically and sonically, with the release of her third studio album, “Don’t Forget Me.” 

The brief 35minute, 10track album was released April 12, following her 2022 album “Surrender” and 2019 album, “Heard It In A Past Life.” Rogers, arguably most known for getting “discovered” by Pharrell Williams when she was a student at NYU, said she wrote “Don’t Forget Me” over a fiveday span. 

Opening with “It Was Coming All Along,” Rogers starts in the present but is wary of the future as she sings, “And everywhere I look around / It seems we’re always saying goodbye.” Like a majority of the tracks on the album, she sings about a relationship that’s met its end, in one way or another. In the second verse, there’s a hint to Rogers’ other life — a 2022 graduate of the Harvard Divinity School with a Master of Religion and Public Life degree — as she adds, “I know I might sound existential But I swear thеre’s some potential / In thе actuality.” A backing track of plenty of reverb adds a freshness and leaves the track ending on a hopeful note, despite Rogers’ hesitations about the future. 

“Drunk” and “On & On & On” have a late ’80s, early ’90s vibe to them, with funky beats and an edge reminiscent of Alanis Morissette or Natalie Merchant. Both feel in line with her faster paced, rock-influenced “Surrender.” “On & On & On” in particular seems to stale a little fast, the repetition of it going, well, on and on and on. 

Another track that falls flat is “Never Going Home,” a loose, country-influenced number (yes, there is a reference to “those old-heeled boots”) when Rogers reflects on why she ended a relationship. Some of the country influence could be attributed to Ian Fitchuk, songwriter and producer who collaborated with Rogers on “Don’t Forget Me” and who also recently worked with Kacey Musgraves on “Deeper Well.” Nevertheless, the repetition is overdone and while twangy, sonically, there’s too much similarity to a lead single, “So Sick of Dreaming.”  

“The Kill” is one of the strongest tracks on the album as Rogers reflects on that past relationship, lyrics on a bouncing rhythm like, So difficult, but so invincible / Irresistiblе, but I loved you still.” By the time she gets to the bridge, Rogers’ tempered down rage leaks through her vocals, a mellowed version of what listeners heard on “Surrender.” It’s a windows-down-in-the-car, fast-walk-down-the street type of song, with its buzzy baseline and push and pull lyrics. 

There’s an early 2000s sound to “If Now Was Then,” Rogers with a restless energy as she voices what she wishes she would do if she could make her decisions over again, once again slipping back into her past to reflect on what led her to the present day. “I would say the things that I never said / Oh, the things I’d do, oh, if now was then” Rogers sings, biting her way through “But you can’t take it back as regret seeps in. 

“I Still Do” and “All The Same” bring listeners back to Rogers’ first album, pairing the soft, scaled-down acoustics of a piano or a guitar with Rogers’ wistful, wishful lyrics. There’s no belting in these ballads, but Rogers’ packs plenty of emotion within her voice and words. While reminiscent of her earlier works, there’s a more depth behind these two, a sense that Rogers has reached the end of her reflection and is turning a chapter — the same idea seen sonically throughout “Don’t Forget Me.” 

Throughout the album, there’s a blend of old and new, of songs that have a springtime freshness to them followed by gritty, funky tracks for fast paced nights, a trip to the past for a moment of relief in the present. As she settles into her new chapter of sound, Rogers does the same with herself, making peace with her past while winding down her journey of reflection on a confident note, a reminder that she’s been there all along and everything she’s learned in the past will find its way into her future.

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Syd Pierre
Syd Pierre, Editor In Chief
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