Today, Montreal singer/songwriter and sometimes-comedian Jon Lajoie announced the return of Wolfie’s Just Fine with the new album Everyone Is Dead Except Us due out on June 16th through Normal Guy Records.

His first new studio release in over five years, Lajoie leans into the sweet spot of his moniker with songs that evoke nostalgic remembrances of pop culture relics and coming of age touchstones alongside piercing insights about what it means to be alive. He also shared today the lead single and title track “Everyone Is Dead Except Us” along with an incredibly poignant video where Lajoie follows the span of life from beginning to bittersweet end.

“This song started as a title that came to me a few years ago,” states Lajoie. “There were no other lyrics, no music, just a few simple words that seemed to sum up a lot for me at the time: everyone is dead except us. I also somehow knew this would be the title of my next Wolfie’s Just Fine album. Over the following months/years, every now and again I’d jot some lyrics down on my morning walks, never overthinking it. I’m not sure when it happened, but sometime in early 2021, I had a complete song. What I couldn’t have anticipated, was that in May of 2021, my father would be diagnosed with a terminal illness, and that over the next six months we would slowly, lovingly, painfully, beautifully, and heartbreakingly say our goodbyes. He passed away on January 4th, 2022. This song may sound dark to some, but for me, it is a celebration of life, a song of gratitude. Everyone is dead, the only people who aren’t dead, are those of us who are currently alive. And eventually (and inevitably) we will join them, and then, others after us will be the ones who are alive, and so on. I remember reading a way more eloquent and sophisticated version of this in a book on Taoism in my early twenties (because, you know, college). This thought somehow felt, and feels very comforting to me, and forces me to recognize how insanely lucky I am to be one of the alive people on earth in this moment.”

Recorded in Nashville with producer Jordan Lehning (Caitlin Rose, Andrew Combs), Everyone Is Dead Except Us turns the glorious, undeniable, and devastating territory of human existence and the pain of loss and grief, into something to examine and unpack in the span of four-minute-long deeply felt, emotional songs. It’s an album in the key of mortality, one that tends more towards wry observations than melodrama. Across its ten tracks, Lajoie treats the brief nature of life as a stone to be turned over and examined in the palm of his hand, paying careful attention to the cracks and jagged edges of it. Mortality isn’t just about the one-time event of death; it’s both the too long and too short journey up until then that’s filled with losses along the way. The loss of youth, the loss of loved ones, the loss of who you are in order to become who you will be—they’re all present in Lajoie’s mind as he stands on the precipice of middle age, a transition made more complicated by the loss of his father.

Lajoie is never maudlin, even when he’s being “terribly unfunny.” There’s an undercurrent of levity that touches so much of humanity within his songs. The things that mean so much to us, the things that helped us understand who we are or what we’re good at, the things that once brought us a feeling of indescribable joy, aren’t always “important” things. They’re pop culture relics of our past, video games, action movies, and historic events on TV which makes them admittedly a little funny in hindsight. But Lajoie treats the seemingly unserious with the utmost respect and dignity, never allowing a song to sound like an outright joke—each songs’ arrangements call to mind tunes from the likes of Aimee Mann or Nick Cave—all while acknowledging that our memories are fallible and subject to embellishment.

It’s not funny, except that it is. It’s serious, except that it isn’t. It’s tearful, but it’s also the laughter that comes after the heaving sobs. It’s joyful—an embracement of the rush of impossibly strong feelings we were once able to tap into so easily. And it’s heartbreaking—an elegy to a time of purity of spirit we’ll never possess again. And isn’t that duality the very nature of being a person? Well, the alive kind at least.

Known for his satirical albums like You Want Some of This and I Kill People, for his role as “Taco” on the comedy series The League, and as the writer behind some of the catchiest original songs in film and television, in 2016 Lajoie surprised his fans with thoughtful, introspective music made under the moniker Wolfie’s Just Fine. In addition to finding an audience as a comedian and actor, Lajoie has also written numerous songs for film and television, with credits including original songs for The League, The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, The Afterparty, and the newly announced long-awaited Clone High reboot on HBO Max. His first album as Wolfie’s Just Fine, I Remembered but Then I Forgot, was praised as “thoughtful and musically soulful” (Billboard) and “a fine collection of neo-folk” (A.V. Club), while PopMatters singled out Lajoie’s specialty of writing songs through the perspectives of film characters to arrive at “genuine and heartfelt catharsis.” His 2018 follow-up EP, Perfection, Nevada, (Produced by Bright Eyes’s Mike Mogis) further established Lajoie’s unique point of view, with Bloody Disgusting noting that, “Lajoie sure does have a way of bringing beauty and fresh perspective…[that] hits on something we can probably all relate to: sympathy for the monster.”


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