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Raise my glass to the b-side

September 8, 2008

A 2008 re-issue that has surprised me in a number of ways is the new double-disc version of Jimmy Eat World’s Bleed American.  I didn’t pay a lot of attention to Jimmy Eat World at the time.  They seemed too popular, too catchy, too…something.  “The Middle” was something of a guilty pleasure, but it never occurred to me to listen to the rest of the album, still less to track down the b-sides.  Maybe I’m more open-minded nowadays – I’m certainly aware that catchiness and accessibility aren’t downsides.

So here we are, 7 years after the release of this mega-selling album and for no apparent reason they’ve done the deluxe treatment.  But like I’ve said, it’s surprisingly good.  The original album is polished and accomplished while still emotional and passionate.  Corporate rock this isn’t.

The bonus tracks are also pretty good, including their version of Wham!’s “Last Christmas” and a cover of Guided By Voices’ “Game of Pricks” – a surefire way to my heart.  The original b-sides hold up well, too, including the crunchy “No Sensitivity”, which can soundtrack my remaining teen angst any day of the week.

Jimmy Eat World – “Game of Pricks”

Jimmy Eat World – “No Sensitivity”

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