It can be hard to hear criticisms of your favorite music, whether because the music is just that important to you or because the negative remarks feel baseless and unfounded, completely in contrast to your enjoyment of the music. It also can leave you wondering why this wonderful music that is so significant and masterfully crafted in your eyes isn’t getting any recognition. However, I’m strongly of the opinion that everyone has their own experiences with music, and no matter what objective pieces you can break it down to, it’s ultimately a subjective medium.
Still, it doesn’t keep me from wanting to shout across the internet about the wonders of my favorite album by Jimmy Eat World, their 2011 release Invented. In spite of my undying love for it, and in spite of the fact that I’m sure there are others who feel the same way, it’s an album I frequently see forgotten or cast aside among others in their discography, to the extent that I’ve seen fans declare it as “lacking emotion” or being nothing new.
A full review of the album may be in order at a later point when I feel better able to unpack this album that is very close to my heart, but for now, I’m going to stick with speaking about one track that I find to be full of emotion that I’ve been listening to all week.
“Littlething” is the story of realizing you’ve developed feelings for someone, in my eyes. It’s about overwhelming passion and caring for a person that developed without you realizing it, and then the realization strikes all at once as in a dramatic movie climax. It’s an aching that’s “burning away from inside,” longing for release and confession, regardless of the reservations the narrator has about them (“There’s a quiet dream / I know I shouldn’t think”).
The flowing strings and cascading piano riff throughout the choruses just bring home that sensation of developing these feelings, that sort of dramatic slow burning of emotion that concludes in the realization of something that was there all along. It gives a magical, light sensation to the music among the electric guitar typical of Jimmy Eat World’s music, perfectly reflecting the awe and beauty of that feeling.
By no means is it alone in this, but it is certainly one song from Invented that’s bursting with real emotion, and a great example of the fact that the album has something to offer.