Beach Slang & Jimmy Eat World at The Bluebird in Bloomington, IN – May 16, 2017
Words by Tim Anderl | Photos by Lisa Thompson
“My grandma always told me to dress for the occasion and tonight I look like a smooth motherfucker,” said James Alex as Beach Slang launched into the lead line from Santana’s “Smooth” during their support set for Jimmy Eat World at Bloomington, IN’s The Bluebird. Covering material from their earliest 7″ EPs output for Dead Broke Records, as well their two full-length studio albums, The Things We Do to Find People Who Feel Like Us (2015) and A Loud Bash of Teenage Feelings (2016), for Polyvinyl, the band was on fire as Alex stopped mid-song to request shots of Jameson for himself and the audience, and read a list of artists people had yelled that he looked like, including “that dude from The Strokes” and his own input of “Paul Westerburg at his junior prom.”
The band, which consists of longtime bass player Ed McNulty, former Mean Creek guitarist Aurore Oungian and former Afghan Whigs and Cursive drummer Cully Symington, were on fire as they banged out fan favorites “Ride The Wild Haze,” and “American Girls and French Kisses” and teased covers of Lit’s “My Own Worst Enemy” and Red Hot Chili Peppers’ “Give It Away,” before settling in on full covers of Oasis’ “Wonderwall” and Pixies’ “Where Is My Mind.” The band concluded the set with a particularly charged up, fiery version of “Atomic Bomb,” cementing themselves in show-goers memories and establishing themselves as a considerable force to reckoned with.
Arizona’s Jimmy Eat World took the stage, greeted by a packed and hungry crowed who hung on every word during their 20+ song setlist that covered every corner of the band’s considerable cannon. After 30 years it is rare that a band is as polished and sounds as pristine as do the current JEW quintet. And if there were highlights during their long string of best-ofs it was when the band came unhinged during the heavy breakdown of “Pass The Baby,” when Tom Linton took the mic for fan favorite “Blister” or during the band’s encore of Top 40 hit “The Middle,” and singalong closer “Sweetness.”
‘The band launches a shed tour with Incubus almost immediately following this tour.
Jimmy Eat World