The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

The independent student newspaper at the University of Illinois since 1871

The Daily Illini

Review | Maggie Rogers comes into her own on ‘Don’t Forget Me’

Rating: 7.5/10

Maggie Rogers, singer-songwriter, blossoms in her third studio album “Don’t Forget Me,” bringing a whole new vibe and shift in tone from her earlier releases. 

She moves away from the experimental production she utilized in her first two projects and instead opts for simpler instrumentals with impressive vocal melodies. The album is a tale of her experience throughout her twenties and a reflection of how life will somehow work itself out. 

In an interview with Vogue Magazine, Rogers described the album as a “woven memory blanket of this long span in my life.” “Don’t Forget Me” is the end of an era for Rogers, as she moves on and encounters new beginnings.

The first track “It Was Coming All Along” is a coming-of-age story in which Rogers says goodbye to her early life. Rogers sings, “I’m crying, wish I wasn’t hanging on/ But it was coming all along.” 

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She is mourning the fact that she is aging and hopes she will eventually move on. The title of the track is a hopeful message stating that life will keep moving forward, whether you like it or not.

The track contains a catchy, but basic, pop instrumental. This is a common theme throughout the album and a transition from her previous experimental tracks. 

On the next track, “Drunk,” Rogers is intoxicated with the thrill of life as she sings about wishful thinking and careless adventure. The song perfectly captures the feeling of youthful recklessness. 

Rogers sings, “And I see stars that never, ever, ever looked this bright to me/ Feeling on your skin never felt this right to me.” Everything feels so right for Rogers as it all comes together. Due to this thrill, she is “drunk, but not drinkin’.” 

Rogers first performed the next song “So Sick of Dreaming” live on tour in 2023. She introduced the song by explaining that the song was written about the love life of one of her friends. 

The track is about an over-confident man who does not treat his partners with respect. Rogers knocks him off his high horse by proclaiming “Oh, there ain’t no diamond ring you could buy me to take me home.”

“The Kill” points out the low points of growing up and the growing pains of finding a significant other. She reminisces about her perfect-at-the-time relationship in an attempt to capture the feeling once again. 

The peak of this relationship was untouchable — she sets the scene of an emphatic and passionate love that just crashed and burned in the end. Rogers continues with the theme of this album: life is full of difficult battles, but life still goes on. 

The album continues with one of its strongest tracks, “If Now Was Then.” The verses of this song are anecdotes from the past, demonstrating the simplicity of life and fond childhood memories.

The chorus ties it all together and serves as a reality check. Despite her longing for the past, she cannot get it back and must move on. She knows she can not get it back and she is grappling with that struggle. 

This song contains an acoustic guitar and a drum beat with similarities to the sound of fellow female singer/songwriter, Phoebe Bridgers. The chorus sticks with you after listening and finishes with a beautiful build-up and groovy melody. 

“I Still Do” and “All The Same” are rare drum-less tracks from Rogers. She utilizes nothing but piano and acoustic guitar. Both songs are about the power of love and the difficulty of moving on from a past love.

Rogers sums this up in “I Still Do” as she sings “‘Cause love is not a debt you pay/ It’s not something you can give away.” Rogers relies heavily on her songwriting and vocals on these tracks, and it pays off as they serve as solid tracks in the closing half of the album. 

The album finishes with a powerful ballad. Titled “Don’t Forget Me,” it is a plea to not be left behind as those around her go through the phases of life. 

The verses are examples of her friends moving on, getting married, and settling down to begin their new lives. Rogers feels left behind and forgotten as she is on her own journey, parting with past relationships.

Take my money, wreck my Sundays/ Love me ‘til your next somebody,” she sings. Rogers has been through thick and thin with these people, and at every corner, they have had each other’s backs. All she asks is that, despite their new direction in life, she is not left in the dust and forgotten at the end of the day.

Overall, this album is retrospective as Rogers takes listeners through moments in her life and her process of letting go. Rogers manages to capture the whimsical nature of youth with underlying tones of regret and acceptance.  

“Don’t Forget Me” showcases what Rogers is capable of behind her production and successfully encapsulates the mixed feelings of nostalgia while proving her storytelling ability.


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