Missed Connection: Down Memory Lane Puts Out Rocking 8 Song Album Pushing Back on Wokeness

4.4 out of 5 stars

It’s been 2 years since Down Memory Lane released their last LP (titled Catch and Release), but this Montreal-based band, picks up right where they left off, and put out yet another banging record in 2021 called Breathing.

While some bands may teeter on the fence of whether an 8-song album would be called an LP or EP, the semantics don’t really matter here as the album is quite the gem.

Right out of the gate, the song “The Grand Geniuses Of The Modern Days” (with a title that reads like a book title) tears into the Gen Z “screenager” (as they call them) culture of slang words that use mostly nonsensical phrases to communicate via social media to pretend to be intelligent. The song is both poignant and poppy as hell.

Oh, and the “Grand Geniuses” are Kanye West, Drake and Justin Bieber as the band states in a very mocking way.

The song “White House” has a pretty interesting stance on the President of the United States, and it is not calling out any single president (though some could easily see how it is speaking to Joe Biden).

Instead, the song is about how, as a country, we elect old white guys to office who are basically knocking on death’s door and the country has to sit and hope that they don’t get sick and die. Lines like, “Never in my life have I seen a scepter with tubes and wires” points to the decrepitude of the health of the president.

I don’t know the band’s political affiliation, but this song doesn’t necessarily seem to be politically charged as much as it is annoyed by the acceptance of swearing in old ass politicians in general.

The next song “Pandemic Rockabye” is a much more hopeful message to try to bring people together and face the reality of the Covid-19 pandemic and try to unite to get past it. The line “Egocentricity’s gone too far” pointing to the fact that both sides feel they KNOW what the best way forward is, but reality usually suggests a middle ground between the two far sides to come up with the best plan to move forward.

Global Warning” might be the starkest message in the whole album, and it’s a really well done song. As a true punk band, they push back on what people say you should or shouldn’t do. In this song, they are fighting back against the ultra-progressives who basically force their opinions on others and protest everything. “I’ve never fought for a cause or raised my fist against the laws. It doesn’t mean that I don’t care” is a pretty good summary of what most people feel about trying to make change happen. It may or may not be true, but that’s what the majority of people would do when trying to get something changed.

The Log” carries the sentimentality of “don’t be a martyr” for a cause, because it is detrimental to the health (physical and mental) of the subject of the song. I am assuming "the log" being referred to is the cross upon which Jesus was crucified as a martyr as he had to carry it himself. 

The last original song on the album is called “The Tyler Durden Way” (Tyler Durden being the main character from the book/movie Fight Club). It doesn’t specifically point to a person, but it alludes to Donald Trump in a lot of ways, but Conservatives might say it alludes to Joe Biden as well. In my opinion, it can refer to 99% of politicians as they are all trying to use misinformation or skewed information to get their own way and do so with such a swagger because they know that they won’t face any backlash no matter what heinous crap they get away with.

And lastly, the album ends with a Beatles cover song, “I’ve Just Seen A Face.” A pretty straightforward song about a serendipitous encounter that leads to falling in love with a woman. I assume the song has some sort of special meaning to the band, because it is by no means one of the more spectacular songs in the Beatles catalog, and it doesn’t exactly fit the rest of the album, but it is a good punk cover.

I’d highly recommend this band and this album even if it is on the shorter side…most punk albums are.

Every so often, we miss a new album release as there are literally hundreds of albums that come out each year. It’s hard to catch them all unless you are paying very close attention. In times like this, we try to go back on what fell through the cracks. These are the “missed connections” that we try to follow up.

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