Anti-folk artists’ album turns 16 and worth another listen

Anti-folk+artists+album+turns+16+and+worth+another+listen

By Jared Bysiek, Staff Writer

“Remember That I Love You” is the fifth album by the indie, anti-folk artist Kimya Dawson, which was released on May 9, 2006. It features some of their most popular songs such as “Loose Lips,” “I Like Giants,” and “Tire Swing.”

Before her work as a solo artist, Dawson was originally part of a band called The Moldy Peaches with fellow artist Adam Green from 1994 to 2004. The band was a leader in the New York City anti-folk scene and created experimental, lo-fi, and often-comedic songs.

The anti-folk genre is one that is not clearly defined, seemingly having a different definition and categorization of what “is or isn’t” anti-folk depending on who you ask. Generally, the idea is that it is a genre far less serious and technique-driven than what people have recognized as folk music, often emphasizing personality and writing over ability.

Though anti-folk’s qualifications and definitions are debated among a small circle, Kimya Dawson is one of the most well-known artists associated with the genre for both her work in The Moldy Peaches and her solo efforts.

The band experienced some mild fame, touring internationally with The Strokes in 2001 and being featured at the Reading Festival in 2002. However in 2004, Dawson and Green, the main members of the group, put the band on a hiatus to focus on their solo careers.

Her fifth album was released on the label K Records, which is known for releasing albums by bands like Modest Mouse and Beck early in their careers.

Though she was a slightly obscure indie artist, her album received generally favorable reviews from critics, earning a 5/5 on “Alternative Press,” but it wasn’t until the quirky, independent film “Juno,” starring Elliot Page and Michael Cera, came out the following year that her album’s popularity would receive a boost.

The movie featured three songs from the album: “Tire Swing,” “Loose Lips,” and an instrumental version of “My Rollercoaster.” There were also two other songs from Dawson featured on the album, as well as the track “Anyone Else But You” from The Moldy Peaches and two tracks from another anti-folk band she was involved with called Antsy Pants.

The movie was a huge hit, earning $231.4 million at the box office with a budget of $6.5-$7.5 million. The film’s soundtrack became well-loved, reaching number one on the “Billboard 200” – specifically the track “Anyone Else But You,” which was voted the 14th top song on NPR radio in 2008.

Dawson would go on to release two more albums, before slowing down and eventually going on a hiatus, occasionally returning for live performances, and releasing two new tracks since 2020 on Bancamp.

Her music grabbed the attention of indie, experimental music-lovers in the late 2000s, and it’s not hard to see why. Her music is often very soft-spoken, simple, and entertaining. The music she makes is charming and empowering, but also brutally honest when it needs to be.

Her fifth album is no exception to this. Tracks like “12/26” and “My Mom” tackle serious matters like the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and Tsunami, and her mom bedridden in a hospital.

Alongside those tracks, there are more uplifting songs like “I Like Giants” and “My Rollercoaster” which praise body positivity, one’s role in the universe, and enjoying life no matter its ups and downs.

The album’s instrumental side relies mainly on acoustic guitar, but also features violins, xylophones, various percussive instruments, and group vocals littered throughout songs. This often stripped-back nature of the album plays a big part of it feeling so charming and simple. Paired up with her soft-spoken lyrics, it creates an all-around, feel-good album despite the somber moments.

As “Remember That I Love You” approaches its 16th birthday, I highly recommend giving the album a listen — and all her other works and projects, for that matter. Fans of indie, lo-fi, and/or experimental music alike are sure to find something special that they won’t be able to forget.