November 26, 2021
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Life & Culture

Review: Remi Wolf offers unique blend of pop, funk and soul

Juno

Island Records

Remi Wolf creates an intriguing blend of pop, funk, soul and alternative on her new album “Juno.” Her captivating voice, strong lyrics and unique melodies make “Juno” a oneofakind listening experience.   

“Juno” starts off on a high note with the song “Liquor Store.” The track captivates listeners’ attention with the combination of a classic drum set and strong bassline that make the audience bop its heads along with the catchy rhythm. The track’s lyrics are fun and witty, and Wolf is unapologetic with the delivery of her zany lyrics like, “I’m a s— ex-nanny with my marbles on the brink / Of spillin’ all over the carpet, the kitchen floor.” Wolf’s heavy use of metaphors over this upbeat tune creates a listening experience uncommon with many other artists.  

The album provides a distinct listening experience with each track. Wolf implemented new, more experimental elements into the album that some listeners may find jarring, like changing the pitch of her voice and layering it on top of the main vocal track to create an echo effect. Wolf’s lyricism is refined and polished, as she manages to make instances and situations in her songs specific enough to tell a unique story, but just vague enough that individuals can put themselves in Wolf’s shoes. 

The downside of this visionary combination of new musical techniques and engaging lyrics is that there are times where there is too much to focus on and listeners may not be able to appreciate the lyrics. In the song “wyd,” Wolf has the vulnerable lyrics, “And fly away from all the pain, confusing love for fame / Don’t wanna hear my name to feel better,” but there is so much autotune and other technical elements of the song that these lyrics get drowned out.  

“Grumpy Old Man” is unlike any other song on the album and will stick with listeners well after the album is done. Unlike the rest of “Juno,” this song has distinct country influences that are most prevalent in the guitar lines and the inclusion of a tambourine. Wolf even delivers a country style of singing in her vocals with a noticeable southern twang during some iterations of the chorus. “Grumpy Old Man” highlights Wolf’s lyrical strength again through phrases like, “I’m so defensive, I’ve got eggshells around me / I love romance, but I got eggshells around me.”

“Sally” is a beautiful song with a more mainstream sound. The song has a modern drum feel, accompanied by a simple guitar and baseline. This combination allows for Wolf’s voice to shine through and bring intense passion to the lyrics of this complicated, modern love song. 

The tracks on “Juno” offer consistent upbeat tunes that can appeal to listeners across multiple genres. The album manages to pull influences from the genres of country, pop, alternative and techno and the result is impossible to listen to passively. When experiencing “Juno” listeners may find themselves focusing on lyrics or the unique instrumental, but the complex makeup of these tracks make it impossible to simply thrown on as background music. 

“Juno” is off the beaten path and a great experience for listeners who are tired of hearing pop or alternative songs that all sound the same. Wolf found a way to explore and be ingenuitive in the alternativepop genre without shocking listeners or being too obscure.