Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Jukebox: Jimmy Eat World - I Will Steal You Back

Jimmy Eat World has always excelled at writing music about relationships and latest single "I Will Steal You Back" is no exception. Frontman Jim Adkins has described forthcoming album Damage as an "adult breakup record," and the theme is palpable on this track. It's a decidedly less romantic take on rekindling love, Adkins looks to 'steal' back his lover back after a lie has driven a wedge between him and his unnamed suitor, with an acknowledgement that Adkins is fighting a battle he's "sure to lose," but there's beauty in his hopelessness. His voice drips with yearning and the subtle inflections of words like "walls" make the emotions more palpable, the nuances more pronounced. Adkins has an ear for detail and puts it to good use on here in stark contrast to the overblown arrangements that dulled down 2010's Invented.

Damage was rumored to have a focus on acoustic guitar, but that element isn't as prevalent as the band's descriptions would have you believe. The acoustic is very much as part of the song, but it is far from the main attraction after the first verse. However, the purity of the acoustic strums provide a very nice accent for the main riffs and plucky bass. This is a new look for Jimmy Eat World, but still sounds very much like the group as it could have been a cut off of Clarity if the production sounded like that on Chase This Light. The ways the elements mesh work almost too perfectly, making "I Will Steal You Back" one of the stronger, if more contrived, songs JEW has made in the past seven years.

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