Review by Dom Vigil
One second, Learn Forget Repeat is upbeat and high energy, changing tempo and key in the blink of an eye, and the next, the album is lulling you into relaxation with slower, mellow songs. If All People’s newest release is anything, it’s versatile.
All People waste no time, throwing you right into a fast paced, catchy tune with the first song, “Consume,” which starts off almost punk sounding, but is topped off with keys and catchy vocals. The following song, “Unfinished Book,” keeps that high energy, but with a completely different sound, almost verging on poppy in the beginning of the track. It becomes apparent within the first few songs on the album that the guitar tone throughout this album is one of its strongest aspects – it’s both gritty and poppy, a really interesting mix that somehow works perfectly.
“Mind” is yet another example of the versatility on Learn Forget Repeat, as it is very funky and catchy. The infectious chorus of the repeated, “You are not your mind,” is bound to get stuck in your head by the time the song fades out. Another rather funky song on the album is “Doubt,” which is also carried heavily by a very punk sounding bass line. Somehow, All People manage to mesh vastly different musical stylings in this song (as well as the rest of the album) and it totally works. Instrumentally and vocally “Doubt” is one of the strongest songs on the album, from wild, blink and you miss it guitar solos to varying vocal styles and a strong bass line. Then, the following song “Conversations” is mellow and melodic with a pretty lead guitar part – it’s completely on the opposite end of the spectrum from “Doubt,” but it totally works.
The only complaint I really have with Learn Forget Repeat is in some of the vocal work. While in songs like “Doubt,” it is incredibly strong and soulful, the vocals seem to be lacking that spark in many other songs on the album. “Mind” is a good example of this – with very strong lyrical content, the vocals seem to unfortunately fall a little flat. However, there are definitely songs that they shine on, such as the slower, more emotional, “Conversations,” which hosts some of the best vocal work on the album. The emotion is palpable in “Conversations,” as the song goes from zero to one hundred rather quickly.
There is definitely more than one side to All People. Just listen to the seventh track on this album, “Litwop,” and you’ll understand what I mean. Leading with a strong, yet mellow bass line and pretty guitar work, “Litwop” threatens to be just a quiet, laid back track, but then the horn comes in about two thirds through the song, catching you off guard much like the rest of the album, as the band changes keys, tempos and moods in the blink of an eye. Learn Forget Repeat is definitely worth more than one listen, as you’re bound to find something new to enjoy every time.
Listen to “Converstaions” or “Doubt”