Jimmy Eat World is a staple in the pop-punk world. Their songs are catchy, fun, upbeat, and at times somber. Things don’t change on this album. While there may not be as many stand out songs as on their previous release, the entire record is something you can leave on and not mind any track that plays. Some of the songs make you feel good while others make you want to give Jim Adtkins a hug. Either way it’s a great album to get to know.
Things kick off on the right track with “Big Casino.” As with most of the songs found here, this one is catchy. The high pitched trilling guitars and the energetic music gets you pumped for the rest of the album. It seems to be about enjoying life and not giving it up, which is what this song makes you want to do. “Let It Happen” starts off with a really light and melodic guitar before growing distorted and heavy during the chorus. What’s notable here is how the line “Cause I can laugh it off/I can laugh it off” comes to life when Adtkins quietly sings “Ha ha ha ha ha.” It’s something so subtle that really makes the song pop. It then ends on the same soft note it started on. Their both great tracks that show why the band is well loved.
A mellow acoustic guitar introduces “Carry You,” a bittersweet track about not living up to someone’s expectations. During the lyrics, Adtkins comes off snide in his own way, especially when he sings lines like “I’m not your anything.” Though the song may not be the happiest, it’s nothing compared to “Gotta be Somebody’s Blues.” This track is downright bleak. The music is somber and the additional string instruments add a lot of tension to the mood. The musical build up here is great; it really keeps the listener on edge and delivers when the drums come in. You feel everything the song is trying to get across even before the lyrics start. It’s one of the best songs on the record because it shows a different side to the band.
But they don’t keep the gloomy mood for long. One of the most upbeat and fun songs on the LP is “Electable (Give It Up).” The fast pace, simple repetitive chorus, and the energy all make you get up and start moving. It just one of those songs that puts you in a good mood whenever you hear it. “Feeling Lucky” also keeps the upbeat nature going though the lyrics seem a little self-deprecating: “Waiting for the line to move a foot, yeah/Wasting my life on nothing good/Suck that lucky feeling right outta me.” “Here it Goes” takes more influence from pop music. There’s no other way to describe the music aside from happy. Still, just like so many other tracks it’s really catchy and gets you dancing before you know it.
The album ends on a bit of a sad note with “Dizzy.” It’s a slower song that still manages to have some intense moments. It seems to be about the end of a relationship, but what makes it notable is how Adtkins sounds fed up and angry rather than sad. As far as break up songs go it’s a nice change of pace. Also, employing these feelings puts a lot of passion and feeling behind the vocals that makes you appreciate the song more. It may not be the most positive song on the album, but it’s still an interesting way to end things.
Overall, the album gets 8/10. Just as with their previous efforts, the band manages to make another record that’s great from start to finish. All sides of Jimmy Eat World can be found here: from their light poppy sound to their downright depressing nature. Though things can get a little gloomy, the guys make sure to have lots of energetic music that gets fans going. With so many great albums under their belt, it’s difficult for new fans to know where to start. I would say this is as good as any.