• James Harvey

Album Review - Time Enough - The Once - 2018

Hailing from Newfoundland, Canada, this trio, whose album, ’Departures’ is a must own in my opinion, have released their next offering, ‘Time Enough’. Made up of nine tracks, I shall dive in hoping it holds up to the above mentioned ‘Departures’.

One of the main things I love about ‘The Once’ is even when the lyrics are dark, they tell the tale in a bright, almost cheerful way. This continues right from the off with the first track “I Can’t Live Without You”. The music has you tapping your foot, and the tale itself brings a smile to your face as you listen to a song of new love, and you can really relate to it.

“Before the Fall” opens with those harmonies they are known (these continue throughout), in another tale of personal relationships. “Any Other Way”, stays with the relationship theme that is fast becoming the overall feel of the album. This tale however digs deeper in an emotional way, asking those questions that are sometimes brought up between people, with lyrics like ‘If I was alone and lost in the wood, would you come find me’.

“Lead Me Lover” while still bordering on the folk pop sound, becomes a little more layered and darker. The harmonies now continue through the whole track, giving it a much more grown up weary feeling, reflecting on a shift in, not only the album, but the way in which life/love is being viewed or spoken about.

“Another Morning” confirms the transition in the feel of the album, from new love breaking open to experience and loss. “You Don’t Love Me” is the realisation it’s all for nowt, that point in which you discover that love is one sided and that person you had hoped to be with forever has moved on without you. It also completes the transition from folk pop style to a more sombre sounding album, this really comes out of the blue, like the ending of most relationships, and helps to create a more emotional ambiance.

“Foreign Shore” is a song about finding yourself, or at least it is in my opinion. Things have finished in the relationship now and you are left to wonder what is next. What happens now, do you mourn the loss of everything that came before, or do you throw yourself onto those foreign shores of the future.

Stripping the sound back to a more traditional folk sound, “We Look Back” does just as the title suggests. It makes you ask the question of what if, what signs or chances did you miss over the years. Which brings us to “Some Lies”. This is not only the stand out track of the album but one of the stand out songs of the 21st century so far, for me.

In a little over four minutes the huge emotional experience you are taken through with this song will stay with you. I for one, was moved to tears, everything from the simple music to the complex harmony kept me gripped until the chilling emotionally raw ending. If a band is ever defined or remembered by one song, “Some Lies” would be the one, ‘The Once’ are remembered for.

You may have guessed, I like this album one heck of a lot. For me it portrays a relationship from its exciting beginnings to its emotional endings. ‘The Once’ goes further than just the basics however; reflecting on the reasons, the missed opportunities and the bitter endings in love and life, both in terms of storytelling and music style. Changing the pace and sound of an album to show those fluctuating emotions is a brave thing to do and something I suspect a lesser band would have failed at; but I’m delighted to say ‘The Once’ nailed it.

For more information or for tour dates, you can check out their official website here:


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