“Long Lost” by Lord Huron is flawless. I mean that sincerely; this is a perfect album, an instant classic, a deeply profound meditation on the passage of time with the sounds of a life of reflection and contemplation on how one spent their days. At the climax of this breathtaking fusion of classic country and indie-folk comes a question we will all wrestle with at some point: “what does it mean if it all means nothing?”, and while the song (and the character in the album’s narrative) likely isn’t echoing King Solomon in Ecclesiastes, it’s hard not to listen to “Long Lost” and walk with the main character through his life and not be filled with a sense of questioning about our own lives and the choices we’ve made, wondering where all the time went along the way. Why did the golden days go away? What about the promises I’ve made to others? Where have I been all this time? When did I become the person I am now? “Long Lost”, mostly a calm and relaxing album, is a sobering shock to the soul weighed down by the gravity of life under the sun.
The pinnacle of this is “Time’s Blur”, a 14 minute long track that I can only describe as the sound of nostalgia itself. It is not a song in a traditional sense, but an experience, and one that can only be understood at the end of the album it is based on as it blends, blurs, and bends the sounds you just heard into a foggy fading memory. “Time’s Blur” has no words, but it does not need to speak for you to know exactly what it is saying, nor for you to feel everything Lord Huron hopes you feel. As you recall a particular season of your life – as I did, reminiscing about the 10th anniversary of the single most important and determinative season of my life this past summer – and realize your memories are slipping away and years become drops in the lake of time, “Long Lost” (and “Time’s Blur” specifically) are welcomed friends to help process this strange grief, and they couldn’t have come at a better time.
My 2021 Album of the Year, “Long Lost” by Lord Huron, is available wherever your get your music.
(2022’s instant contender for Album of the Year, “Epigone” by Wilderun, releases in seven days. That was fast.)