JIMMY EAT WORLD have been responsible for two records that have come to characterise pop-rock and emo. However, since 2001 they have released a number of quality follow ups that have brought to my attention an issue with how we critique this band’s records. This issue is the unrelenting comparisons to personally favoured releases. A quick look at Jimmy Eat World’s music videos reveal fans ordering their favourite records and moreover defending their subjective opinion to the bitter end of the comment thread. So will this album make its why up to the top of fans lists? Maybe.
The new release of Jimmy Eat World, Integrity Blues offers some deeper exploration and some pop-rock songs that should be turned up and enjoyed. The appeal of Jimmy Eat World has always been touching lyrics with hooks that just don’t stop giving, well until your housemates tell you to cease the racket. These features are still prominent. The mid-section of Integrity Blues differs slightly and offers some ‘cool’ songs and this is a refreshing change. In fact when the closing of the album returns to pop-rock, it reminds you of just how good the band are. Integrity Blues highlights the core problem with the, at times, intimidating fandom of Jimmy Eat World by being another solid release.
The albums of Jimmy Eat World appear to hit people when they really ‘need’ it. On the back of this connection, fans become very protective of the band and their records. I must confess I am a fan of Jimmy Eat World and wouldn’t prefer a new record even if it trumped their classic albums in every way. However, Integrity Blues offers an opportunity for new fans to adore a record like so many have before them. Jimmy Eat World continue an output that should be commended; even if older fans will wish to dig out their back catalogue and listen to them on a rocking chair, whilst muttering ‘kids these days’.