12 Songs, 44 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jimmy Eat World mark more than a decade of music-making with their sixth studio release, Chase This Light, hiring producer Butch Vig to give the record some spit and polish. Some fans may whine there is more polish than spit here, as the band hangs on to their original post-punk aspirations with a dangerously thin thread. The first single, “Big Casino,” is built on a solid J.E.W. foundation, with energetic, buzzing guitars pushing Jim Adkins’ vocals to their emotional brink, a sticky chorus thrown out there just often enough to keep you hooked. A strong contender for single treatment, “Let it Happen,” follows, with a clever and acerbic lyrical lashing (“I can laugh it off… heh heh heh heh…”), and even the third track is readymade for radio play. The best moment here is a real stylistic diversion, and shows what the band is capable of: “Gotta Be Somebody’s Blues” starts off with creeping, atonal guitar strumming that gets swept up into a yowling, warped phalanx of strings, and Adkins’ quiet vocal delivery nails the somber mood.  It feels experimental and dramatic, and is completely satisfying.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Jimmy Eat World mark more than a decade of music-making with their sixth studio release, Chase This Light, hiring producer Butch Vig to give the record some spit and polish. Some fans may whine there is more polish than spit here, as the band hangs on to their original post-punk aspirations with a dangerously thin thread. The first single, “Big Casino,” is built on a solid J.E.W. foundation, with energetic, buzzing guitars pushing Jim Adkins’ vocals to their emotional brink, a sticky chorus thrown out there just often enough to keep you hooked. A strong contender for single treatment, “Let it Happen,” follows, with a clever and acerbic lyrical lashing (“I can laugh it off… heh heh heh heh…”), and even the third track is readymade for radio play. The best moment here is a real stylistic diversion, and shows what the band is capable of: “Gotta Be Somebody’s Blues” starts off with creeping, atonal guitar strumming that gets swept up into a yowling, warped phalanx of strings, and Adkins’ quiet vocal delivery nails the somber mood.  It feels experimental and dramatic, and is completely satisfying.

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