Jimmy Eat World has been around for almost 20 years, and have stayed true to what they most believe in. So how does a band in their late 30s keep writing music their fans will relate to?
With a short message on Facebook on Wednesday, April 3, Jimmy Eat World announced the release of their next album.
“New Full Length Album. Damage // June 11, 2013,” the message read.
The Tempe, Arizona band has had their ups and downs, from indie records to worldwide hits, but have always stayed true to their music. Their fans have stuck around that whole time, because they’ve grown up with the band. Since the release of Jimmy Eat World’s first album in 1996, they’ve written albums for where they are in their lives at the time.
They recorded their newest album at the home of producer Alain Johannes, and they created a new sound by going backwards in time.
“We used tape for the first time in a long time, as well as computer,” lead singer Jim Adkins told Rolling Stone. “I hate saying more raw, but it’s more raw and warm. We just set up all around Alain’s house. There were instruments in his bedroom and drums in his living room. Just noise all day long. There was less an emphasis on it being clean and perfect. There’s a lot of stuff that’s more about the performance than it sounding pristine. And I think it feels better for what the songs are.”
Their last album, Invented, was based around one subject. Adkins said there was an outline for that album, and it was something the band ended up really liking.
“I think with Invented [there was] an outline that it would be themed around,” Adkins said. “Not necessarily a subject, but we had a direction before we wrote it. As you get older it’s more interesting to have a theme that everything tries to support — I would say this album has a theme.”
That “theme” shows where the band is these days. Their first album Static Prevails came out almost 20 years ago, and the four band members are no longer the kids they once were.
“I would describe it as an attempt at making an adult breakup record,” Adkins continued. “The consequences to what the characters are going through are more significant. There’s just more to it. I’m 37 and the world around me is a lot different than when I was writing breakup songs in my 20s. I tried to reflect that in what the lyrics are.”
The first single for Damage has yet to be determined, but the band will be participating in Record Store Day on April 20 by releasing the title track as a 7-inch. Jimmy Eat World has done major tours with bands like Foo Fighters and Green Day in the past, but this time they’ll probably keep it small, starting with a tour around Arizona.
As for the band, they’re happy with the direction they’ve gone in. Adkins told Rolling Stone that each album is something new for the band. But in the end, each album adds to the sound that is Jimmy Eat World.
“I think we’re really proud of the record,” he adds. “It’s something we put a lot of work into and we really wanted to get right, whatever that meant for the song. I don’t think it’s that dissimilar to things we’ve done in the past.”