Review Summary: Life in the internet-age and coming to terms with the fall of the American dream.
There’s something strange about facing life head-on in today’s day and age. With the internet taking over, people seemingly becoming more connected to technology and more disconnected from the past. I almost feel bad for Jeff. The outcries of realization, as he watches all his friends and loved ones move on without him feel brutal and WORRY.
almost feels like his cathartic revelation. Jeff’s realized what he’s missed out on being into music for pretty much over half his life, and you can tell he wishes he could at least
go back and change something. Just something. As the gang vocals howl ”All these magic moments I’ve forgotten”
on “We Begged 2 Explode” the future seems imminent. The nostalgia is cancelled, the future is almost too possible for Jeff, and this is how he decides to express it. And god’s sake we can’t all but feel the the exact fúcking same
Nostalgic tendencies have been plaguing a lot of modern music lately, and Jeff chooses to take those tendencies to work with his own spin on them. The album kicks into high gear with mid 2000’s indie-influenced “Pash Rash” into the old-school BTMI! and seemingly Andrew WK influenced “Festival Song” that at surface level seems like an attempt to rekindle some past sounds but really works so much better in the concept of WORRY.
as a whole. The thing that makes the record so interesting and captivating is its experimentation in concept and musicianship as well. The entire second half of the album that plays as one big long punk rock subgenre circlejerk tinkers with everything from full blown hardcore, ska, folk-punk, power-pop, indie-rock, as well as his classic spin on punk-pop we all know and love from him. Such versatility and constant style changes that transition so well could only really be pulled off by an artist like Jeff Rosenstock. Only Jeff can write a blazingly fast song about greed from high-class businesses taking advantage of customers into a soft indie-rock song about the housing crisis in America of the past few years that flow and transition so fluidly. The experience Jeff has is so evident to the listener.
But Jeff’s musical experience isn’t really the only thing that makes this record so appealing. His perspective and life experiences, coupled with subtle nostalgic tendencies as well as seemingly cathartic opinions on today’s America, give a refreshing perspective of our world in today’s music. It’s a really different experience for him, as well as us as the listeners. I found it hard to speak softly once trouble finally found me, with a glaring stare and a couple holes in the wall. Jeff isn’t really trying to tell us stories. He’s telling us a message. Jeff is seemingly stating that trouble is worry, and that’s how life goes sometimes. Just patch up those holes in the wall and go back to bed. There’s no such thing as safety, there is no American dream. We can all hope for some closure, but life is as unpredictable as it gets. Life is vertigo, life is constant worry, life is signaling your hindsight, which of course is always 20/20. Jeff said it best honestly, love is worry. Love is WORRY.
, Jeff pretty much broke me into a new man. He instilled a sense of doubt in myself that I couldn’t have needed more. WORRY.
is a shocking revelation that life is temporary and it’s not all fun and games, but that’s okay. We all have demons, but sometimes we can’t see them, and when we do, maybe we just need to take them out for a drink or something. On closer “Perfect Sound Whatever”, Jeff, over triumphant and war-torn instrumentation, states ”Perfect always takes so long, because it don’t exist.”
Well Jeff, i think you’ve been staying up late to exorcise those demons you couldn’t keep, but you never really realized they were right in front of you this whole time. That’s okay, because maybe there is no such thing as the American dream, but perfect can exist, and it’s been right here in front of you this entire time.