Nebulous since its late ’80s genesis, emo had most recently evolved into a sad guy poetry slam reserved exclusively for the pop-punk/post-hardcore set. Bands with three-tiered names poured lyrical anguish all over strident power chords, and grownups just didn’t get it. Jimmy Eat World tries to have it both ways on Futures. Their name still rocks the three-way jibberish, and the album sometimes sounds like it’s tugging those emo heartstrings. But with its slick and enormous arrangements, blandly meaningful lyrics (“Stay with me/You’re the one I need”), propensity for ballads, and baseless nods to a harder sound (“Nothingwrong”), Jimmy Eat World have really made an emo album that’s sanitized and safe for an impatient adult world. “Just Tonight…” meshes the pep of the band’s 2003 hit “The Middle” with vintage Pearl Jam tension; it’s the tale of a one-night stand for everyone who’s grown out of them. Liz Phair guests on the Weezerific “Work,” which is telling, since Liz’s own recent makeover was a clever co-opting of youth rebellion for a thirtysomething world. Jimmy Eat World gets stuck in a similarly awkward spot on Futures, because they can’t decide whether they’re doing it for the kids or hitting on their moms.
Johnny Loftus writes about music for Metro Times. E-mail email@example.com.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.