Sunday, September 23

Jimmy Eat World outgrows high school gigs, enjoys newfound fame


Monday, October 19, 1998

Jimmy Eat World outgrows high school gigs, enjoys newfound
fame

Band follows heart by touring country in van, enjoying beauty of
nation

By Brent Hopkins

Daily Bruin Contributor

Jimmy Eat World ­ ’50s horror movie or ’90s band?
Apparently, the latter. It’s four guys from Mesa, Ariz., touring
the country in a van, just looking for a good time. Whether that
comes in the form of jamming onstage or seeing the sights on the
road, the musical life is a good one for the band.

The band’s members have literally played together for most of
their lives. Lind and singer-guitarist Jim Adkins attended the same
preschool and have remained friends ever since. After meeting
bassist Rick Burch and the second singer-guitarist Tom Linton in
high school, the band came together in 1994. Now that they’ve moved
beyond the awards ceremony and garage party circuit that most high
school bands never escape from, Lind isn’t looking back. Rather
than seeking post-high school jobs, the members of Jimmy Eat World
have committed themselves full time to making music.

‘This is what we do until the fun is over.’

Currently touring to support their major-label debut CD ‘Static
Prevails,’ Jimmy’s members have seen a lot of unusual things while
criss-crossing the country. They’ve had highlights, such as the
breathtaking natural beauty and classic architecture of Victoria
Island, British Columbia. They’ve also had low points. In Idaho,
their van hit a patch of ice and slid off the road.

‘We were about a foot and a half from death,’ Lind said
somberly, before adding with a laugh, ‘It was pretty nuts.’

The band has been described as having an emo-core sound. Short
for ‘emotional-hardcore,’ this New Wave-like music hasn’t exactly
taken the musical world by storm. Lind described the band a bit
differently from their official designation.

‘We don’t consider ourselves any kind of label,’ he said,
eschewing the emo-core description.

While the name of the band’s style may be confusing, their stage
name is not. Jimmy Eat World stems from a childhood drawing by
Linton’s brother. Poking fun at his pudgy younger sibling, the
sketch featured a stick figure devouring a globe. Scribbled at the
top of this rough masterpiece was the headline ‘Jimmy Eat World.’
The band’s name sprung forth from this modern-art offering.

‘When we first started, we thought we were kind of a stupid
band, so we gave it a stupid name,’ Lind joked.

Though the band has come a long way from its high school jam
roots, the name is here to stay. Now that they’ve signed with
Capitol Records, they may not have hit the big time, but they are
trying to increase their popularity through more exposure. Lind
says the band tries to tour frequently, spreading its music over a
wide geographic range. Rather than sticking strictly to the musical
scene of Mesa, Jimmy has scoped the entire country. Lind enjoys
touring, not only because it allows the band to spread its name,
but also as an educational experience. Rather than staying in
motels, watching pay-per-view and ordering room service, the band
prefers to explore their surroundings. From city to city, they try
and get to know the citizens and see local points of interest. The
key ingredient, however, to a successful tour is how the music
sounds.

‘It’s a lot of fun when the shows are good,’ Lind says, ‘and we
have a lot of fun in L.A.’

Even after an all-night drive from San Francisco prior to their
Friday concert in Westwood Plaza, the band turned out a brief set
of high-voltage music. Adkins apologized for not being more
dramatic, but the crowd didn’t seem to mind. While the band members
themselves were usually restrained, with both vocalists singing
with their eyes tightly shut and remaining set in one place
onstage, their musical output was not. With their amplifiers
cranked loudly, they drenched the plaza with their ‘more serious
sounding pop,’ and engaged the fair-sized crowd. Listeners embraced
the emo-core sound.

‘It was really cool. I highly enjoyed their performance,’ says
Dalbir Singh, a second-year undeclared student.

Singh went on to compare Jimmy’s sound to that of alterna-band
China Drum.

His review was a bit more straightforward than an oddball
compliment voiced by another crowd member.

‘They were better than vegan cookies!’

PATIL ARMENIAN

Jim Adkins, lead guitarist and singer of Jimmy Eat World,

swallows up Westwood Plaza on Friday afternoon.

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© 1998 ASUCLA Communications Board[Home]

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