on January 17, 2005
Jimmy Eat World's brand of punchy power pop is really something special these days. While I'm really enjoying the rise of all these arty indie rock type bands, like Wilco and Modest Mouse, sometimes I want to listen to something that's just catchy and fun, and with the exception of a handful of bands, there aren't many out there today doing that kind of thing that are really worth listening to. But, Jimmy Eat World is the perfect band for the occasion.
The most interesting thing about their music is that they can manage to be both sad and uplifting at the same time. A lot of their lyrics are rather depressing and melancholy, but the music is overall pretty upbeat, and doesn't really feel depressing. Jim Adkins apparently wants to share his thoughts and feelings, but he doesn't really want you to feel sorry for him, which I think is cool. That way, it never comes across as "whining", as is often the case with many bands in the "emo" style. Even when the lyrics aren't particularly cheery, the music still makes you feel good.
The album starts with the title track, a mid-paced rocker with big hooks, and a cool acoustic break. "Just Tonight" and "Pain" are faster-paced, with driving rhythms, and rousing choruses (the latter reminds me a bit of Thrice, but less metallic). "Work" and "Kill" are super-catchy melodic rock, and "Drugs or Me" and "23" are epic ballads, with huge arrangements. There's not a great deal of variety on this album, but the songwriting is strong enough to keep it interesting. The musicianship is excellent, with powerful melodic guitar hooks, and energetic drumming. Pretty much everything you could want in a straight-forward melodic rock album is here.
If you want something catchy and fun, with a great deal of songwriting talent, Jimmy Eat World is a can't-miss. Along with Green Day's "American Idiot", this is one of the best pop rock albums of the year (and look, you can get them both here for a great price). Buy today.
on February 3, 2005
Ah,yes. Hello... If you are reading this review you chances are you already know how great this album is. If you've read my previous reviews you know I'm a bit long-winded so for those in a hurry, I give you this:
This IS the best album of the year. Hands down.
For everyone else: This record has a bit of something for everyone. The only CDs that even come close are How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb by U2, The Used's In Love and Death and My Chemical Romance's Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge. Now if you are a "Oohh, I absolutely love The Middle and Sweetness was sooo good" you should enjoy half of this album. Most notably: Pain (cuz MTV tells you to) and Futures. The harder-edged fans should also enjoy Pain, Just Tonight and Nothingwrong. The REAL JEW fans (you know who I'm talking about...) would never say they sold out for doing a "techno-pop" cover of Wham's "Last Christmas" and any and all nay-sayers should be tied up and forced to listen to Ashlee Simpson sans vocal track for the rest of eternity. Everything Jimmy & Co. have done they have done for a reason. Static Prevails showed frightening talent for a debut album, and Clarity showed the kind of growth and maturity you'd expect for them after they had conquered MTV not being ignored by them. Bleed American was of course their breakthrough album, probably because it showed they could be precise, intelligent pop with the same lyrical maturity as Clarity albeit not as "deep".
Futures however is essentially a bridge between their last two records. Taking the radio-friendly pop and turning up the (almost Tim Burton-like) darkness along with the most meaningful and important lyrics this side of the new millenium makes for the album of the year.
1.) FUTURES: The title track begins with a bang. Dear Lord, JEW has found THE guitar riff, arguably the best rock hook since Bleed American. The verses drive and the chorus soars (believe me a recurring theme throughout...), making this punchy anthem perfect for a generation stuck in a state of apathy. I'd also like to note here that by tuning down a half step they have made the guitars the perfect complement to Jim Adkins' voice.
2.) JUST TONIGHT: Fans of Get It Faster will enjoy the frenetic energy of this tight, little ditty. A song about lying to yourself in the name of lust features a guitar solo that rivals Faster's along with a jumpy piano piece playing behind. A very cool effect.
3.) WORK: Arguably the best song on the album, and probably the best single you'll ever hear this year features a boy-meets-girl premise with the all too familiar lets ditch the prom theme that effectively delivers so much you'd think they came up for the blueprint. Liz Phair's backing vocals complement Jim's nicely and also helps the song take an ethereal feel, also noticeable on the first opening bars of the song.
4.) KILL: Work and Kill are just effective a duo as Just Watch the Fireworks and For Me This is Heaven. The rolling bassline and interplaying guitar mesh nicely and the heartbreak pours out of Mr. Adkins in what may be their most personal song.
5.) THE WORLD YOU LOVE: In this song JEW has a story thats almost finished and all he needs is someone to tell it to. This is an incredibly uplifitng song with nothing special musically excceept that it will get inside your heart. Good song with a great message.
6.) PAIN: JEW fans around the world rejoiced as this song began to flood airwaves and MTV2 and for good reason. It's rare a song this hard is this catchy and they incorporate a kind of off the wall guitar solo with chugging verses and "hey mom, I kind scream too" (although real JEW fans know this was hardly their first time.) Wearing your heart on your sleeve never rocked so hard.
7.) DRUGS OR ME: This perfect power ballad also happens to be piano-driven and forces the song kind-of-under the radar until it's JEW with their foot on the gas as far as noise goes. Definitely, one of the few ballads ever the crescendos into one hell of a sonic boom.
8.) POLARIS: My personal favorite, this song brings so much to the table as far as lyrics and music are concerned. The bass is kinda creepy, defintely eerie as far as bass patterns go and you can tell Zach Lind (the drummer) had a blast with the rhythm parts. This is also the first time we hear Tom Linton's U2 inspired Edge impression over the chorus. The best lyrics on the album that will speak to anyone who has ever felt the joy and pain of love.
9.) Night Drive: Another epic ballad this time incorporating the eerie hook from Get It Faster this time talking about perhaps what happens at the end of Work. A great creepy epic song featuring na-na-na-nas and lush arrangements and a dark, sinister side of Adkins' voice seldom heard.
10.) Nothingwrong: A nice statement about the state of music and society that happens to be the hardest song on the album. Playing with the old-school call and response guitar system Linton & Adkins, armed with a nice delay pedal, send this song into overdrive doing their best Tom Morello and a badass breakdown.
11.) 23: Another seemingly U2 inspired track that talks about life after adolescence. They never condescending and never preach but let you know that there are things we should never take for granted . Also featuring a guitar riff that would make Eric Clapton proud, this is the perfect finish to a perfect album.
I've read some of the dare I say "ignorant" customer reviews calling Futures a mess and that is simply false. If you are tired of Good Charlotte and Simple Plan ruling the airwaves, do yourself a favor and pick up this CD. JEW doesn't get the respect they deserve so the least the music going public could do is treat themselves to a great album by the most under-rated band in America and perhaps the world(?).
on May 9, 2007
Im not 13 just didnt want to make an account...im 21 and very much into music.
1. Futures- *Single* more of the pop side to J.E.W. It just has a great opener and lyrics are sweet. Very catchy song. This song will draw people to this cd. 10/10
2. Just Tonight . . .- Total change from "Futures" with a faster pace song. I love listening to this song when driving or working out. The middle guitar riff is sweet. Great Song 10/10
3. Work- *Single* hmm I liked the song when I first heard it but just kinda got bored with it. Its not a bad song but just no alot to it. 7/10
4. Kill- Kinda have the same feeling as I do with "Work" but not as bad. Good song and love the lyrics. 8/10
5. The World You Love- Think this was kinda a filler song. I still love it though. Catchy song...cant say anything bad about it. 8/10
6. Pain- *Single* Tied for the best song on the album. Fast paced and just rocking. I love it. Lyrics are written very well and chorus is awesome. You will love this song. Guitar riff is really good. 10/10
7. Drugs or Me- What a change from "Pain"....nice slow song that fits good in the middle-bottom of this cd. Kinda a sad song when you listen to it. 9/10
8. Polaris- This is a yummy song. Its a hidden gem. If you just lay back and want to listen to some music play this song. Makes this cd very strong. 10/10
9. Nothingwrong- Back to rock!! Love the opener. very very catchy. 9/10
10. Night Drive- Lyrics are very well done. This song fits the album very well. 9/10
11. 23- BEST SONG FROM JIMMY EAT WORLD!!! I love this song. I listen to it everyday and never gets old. Its long but thats what makes it so good. 11/10
on July 22, 2005
I'd never been a Jimmy Eat World before this album hit. Songs like the middle and bleed american just seemed kind of repetetive, and i got so sick of the middle that I don't think I'll ever want to hear it again. However, Jimmy Eat World made a wise decision not to rip themselves off on this album, and it pays off. Don't get me wrong, "Futures" is far from a huge departure, but most of the time, the band trades in its harder, two and a half minute songs for a batch of softer, far more melodic songs. The sound is crisper than on previous albums, the vocals improved, and the songwriting exemplified. Spearheaded by its two singles "Pain" and "Work", the former especially giving an impression that the band hasn't changed at all, are just pieces of a chain of excellent rock songs. Upbeat rockers like "Futures", and the irresistible "Kill", perhaps the best and most addicting song on the album, will satisfy the fans of the hard edged "Bleed American", and ballads like "Polaris" and "Night Drive" will certainly be hits with the fans of the softer "Clarity", so all fans of the band should be pleased with this eleven song tour de force.
What amazes me about this release is that the band links great song after great song. Even the weakest tracks on the CD, "Nothingwrong" which is hard but not as catchy as "Pain" or "Just Tonight", and the incredibly slow moving "Drugs Or Me", which actually goes too slow, are better than most of the music played frequently on the radio, and many will find themselves loving these tracks almost as much as the others (I became very fond of "Drugs or Me" despite the fact that it might be my least favorite song on the album). However, all complaints are pointless, for Jimmy Eat World have saved the best for last with the epic and heartwrenching "23", a perfect ballad, and a perfect finale.
Another thing was that "Futures" never wore on me. If anything it got better everytime I listened to it. Nearly three quarters of a year after it's release, I still listen to it regularly, and even after so many listens, still find new bits to love. Jimmy Eat World's "Futures" is a flawless pop/rock record, and one that I will remember in ten years as one of the best of 2004, and one of the best of the decade. Five stars and my highest recommendations.
on December 1, 2004
Handling pain, troubled times, and pivotal relationships define our character, both individually, and as a nation. Jimmy Eat World's latest offering, "Futures," deals with these timeless and inescapable truths.
With "Futures," Jimmy Eat World has refined their sound by working in more intricately threaded vocal harmonies, better highlighting keyboards and chords, and bringing back the all-too-forgotten guitar solo.
Easily the band's most well rounded and best sounding release to date, "Futures," offers more than just radio-friendly tracks like the seemingly politically charged sing-a-long title track "Futures," the Weezer-like "Work," and the angst-tinged, anthemic instigators "Nothingwrong" and "Pain."
The most traditional sounding emo tracks on the album are the back-to-back "Kill" and "The World You Love." "Kill" sounds like the desperate diary entries from a semi-defeated, sweaty-palmed admirer set to music, while the carefree vocals on "The World You Love" come across as a triumphant anthem for the emotionally displaced.
The grungy yet upbeat "Just Tonight" sounds like the background music to an 80s workout tape while "Drugs or Me," which closely resembles the intro to Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody," could easily double as theme music for a drug intervention video.
But the most epic and emotionally gripping songs from this effort may be the longer tracks in which the band reveals their expanding guitar prowess.
With subdued vocals and U2-esque guitar, record standouts "Polaris" and "23" are ethereal gems that'll bring out the lighters, and quite possibly the waterworks.
"Night Drive" is an atmospheric commentary on just that, laced with fitting -and at times- Perry Farrell-like backing vocals and an overall surrealistic feel. Perfect for a cold moonlit drive down an unfamiliar road.
Once combined, these very unique songs make one superbly eclectic mix that will appeal to many different tastes while satisfy both longtime and newly founded fans.
"Futures" is an enveloping journey well worth the ride. So...get in.
on May 13, 2011
I just stumbled into this group around 10 years ago. THis IMOP is thier best CD. If you only want one then this is it. I think the second half of the songs are the best on the CD. This is not to say the first are sub-par. My favorite songs are polaris, night drive and 23 (my fav).
on June 14, 2005
Futures, predictably, is not a sequel to the hugely popular "Bleed American". It's in Jimmy Eat World's DNA to find success with one album only to frustrate fans on the next album with an album that sounds only vaguely similar to their past one. In this case there's still enough of the pop sound, particularly on songs like "Pain", to not be as big of a shock to fans as the difference between their debut "Static Prevails" and follow up "Clarity".
For the record, I am a huge fan of their debut album, finding the mix of solid guitar driven riffs and airier emo aesthetics on that record hugely appealing. Then they release the dark and introspective "Clarity" which was a hit with the sweater/backpack/glasses shoegazer crowd but failed to appeal in a big way to fans like me.
Fast forward to "Bleed American" and you get another completely different sounding record. One that relied heavily on catchy pop driven guitars that sits at odds with earlier work. Still, being a fan of pop as well, I could appreciate the tight songwriting behind it as did so many others as evidenced by the resulting huge commercial success they found on that record.
Following that album, as if already scripted, they drop the schizophrenic pop/emo "Futures" on a fan base that for the large part has probably never even heard an emo song. This has got to leave a lot of their newer fans scratching their heads. Long time fans will recognize the ambitious scope of "Clarity" era sound coupled with a bigger emphasis on distorted guitars they bring to this record. Because they've kept a focus on keeping the songs somewhat faster than the tracks on "Clarity" I think they've ultimately made this a more satisfying listen for people that can't get into the lighter side of emo.
Regardless of where you sit on the emo fence, it's hard not to respect the level of musicianship Jimmy Eat World have ascended to. The hooks never get bogged down by the complexity of the melodies and the supporting cast of alternate instruments and loops brings a rounded, mature flavor to this record. There's really only a couple of dips into super emo waters with cuts like "Drugs or Me" and "Night Drive" with the latter being tolerable. On the same token, I was surprised by how much I liked the slower "Polaris" which builds from a U2 inspired riff into a surprisingly cathcy chorus and powerful bridge that reminds me of the days of old. They close out on another surprisingly enjoyable U2 inspired cut called "23". Yes it has strings and piano. Yes it has tasteful back up "ahs" but like I said earlier, they manage to mix this seemingly much too emo mix into a cohesive, sophisticated whole that can't help but move you with its sincere power.
This album will no doubt turn off the vast bulk of their newfound fans but that's only because it's much more unique and challenging than "Bleed American". For long time fans I think this is a satisfying culmination of earlier work with a more commercially appealing yet complex sound.
Check out more reviews at ohboydestroy.
on January 31, 2005
I first got into Jimmy Eat World several years ago just as their 2001 self-titled album came out. That album was in my cd player for months and I quickly went out and bought their first two albums. Clarity quickly became my favorite album.
When I learned that they were (finally!) releasing their follow-up, I got really excited. I don't listen to the radio, so I had to wait until the album came out to buy it! And boy, what a treat!
The title track, Futures, is a great song to open the album up with! From the first minute to the last, the song jumps out with great guitar rifts, catchy lyrics, and the fantastic tenor-voiced Jim Adkins wailing away!
Just Tonight and Work are two great songs about a love lost and working on a relationship. If you listen very closely, you can hear Liz Phair backing up Jim Adkins on the chorus of Work. I believe this is one of the best songs on the album.
I really related to the song Kill because it was about loving someone who never quite appreciated you. In my opinion, this is Adkins' best sung song on this album. His voice is matched beautifully with the guitars. The World You Love is my favorite on this album because I love the message. He sings about the chaos of life, but keeping things simple. Appreciating the little things in life: friends, happiness, the sun. There's a great guitar rift towards the end of the song that just seems... inspiring.
I think we all know and love Pain. Pain was a great choice to introduce the album. It brings in their fans from The Middle, but shows an edgier, different side to their music.
Drugs or Me and Night Drive are their power ballads. They bring in all sorts of instruments and produce songs that are lyrically depressing, but are powerful and meaningful.
Nothing Wrong and Polaris wind down the album and they close with 23. 23 is similar to My Sundown from their 2001 album. It has that slow, guitar feel to it, but just closes the album nicely.
All in all, this album passed Clairty as my favorite album that I own. I bought it when it came out, listened to it a couple of times, then passed over it. I reintroduced myself to the album, and everytime I listen to it, I grow to love it more and more. I was riding the train, listening to the cd on headphones, and felt inspired and moved. They have a great way of bringing that out! I truly hope that this cd gives them the recognition and accolads they so rightly deserved.
If you're a little iffy, take a gamble. I guarantee you won't be disappointed.
Hey, I may be an older than average fan writing here, but I know great music when I hear it and this is IT! This band ROCKS and they seem to be very much unappreciated judging by this CD's ranking on Amazon just a few days after it was released. It's currently ranked only #1,313 in the music category--why not higher??? Maybe the double 13s in the album's current ranking will prove to be a good sign of things to come! hehehe
First off: GET THIS CD! I'll tell you why: the songs on this CD not only rule, they also prove that Jimmy Eat World is a highly talented rock band that is very versatile. The first three songs "Futures," "Just Tonight," and "Work" all rock hard and they are awesomely written. The lyrics are great, too. Throughout the entire CD the listener can so easily relate to the situations we all face in life and love: unrequited love, drugs interfering with life and relationships, worry, anxiety, hope for the future and angst. The song "Drugs Or Me" is an incredible, special ballad showing the "softer" side of this band; they can handle ballads just as easily as they rock! Actually, it's very hard for me to pick a favorite song of mine on the CD--they're all very well done!
A plus about this particular CD is that it is "enhanced;" this as you probably already know means it offers listeners unique access to parts of the Jimmy Eat World web site. I went there; it's easy to register. (The computer may prompt you to tell you it uses something called ActiveX; so if you don't want to use ActiveX you might have a hard time with this feature.) The web site portion reserved for the buyers for the CD has very good MP3s to download and a few good pictures of the band. They indicate that the private portion of the site will be updated in the future, too.
The quality of the CD sound is excellent. You get full lyrics and great pictures of the band members.
In short, Jimmy Eat World has just put out this energetic, electric CD and I highly recommend it for fans of rock, alternative rock, and even punk rock as well. Hopefully we won't have to wait too long for their next CD! ROCK ON, JIMMY EAT WORLD!!!
on May 31, 2011
Ive read that this album isnt as "fun" as bleed American. While I agree it is a little heavier and maybe a bit darker, its just as good, tho a bit less poppy. It might take a couple listens to get it, but thats how it is with all good albums. Well worth buying!