Honestly, Good Question
What the world needs now is more commentary from the patriarchal white man.
Kidding, of course. With all sarcastic remarks aside, Pissed Jeans have made satirizing the cultural and societal “ills” of the modern fair-skinned male their method of musicianship since the early 2000’s. Looking at the appearance of the band members, which consist of vocalist Matt Korvette, guitarist Brad Fry, drummer Sean McGuinness and bassist Randy Huth, one might mistake them for the tight-laced, suburbanite goobers they often jeer. The latest book of Pissed Jeans, called Why Love Now, should not be judged by its aesthetic cover, but by its thematic content.
Through a guise of hardcore punk and noise rock, Korvette’s gruff, Lemmy Kilmister-like vocals bark commentary on sexual frustration, male privilege, entitlement, lack of confidence and a disdain for routine. Co-production from no wave icon Lydia Lunch and Philadelphia metal producer Arthur Rizk aid in bringing in these elements.
Predominately tongue-in-cheek songs, like the first to come off the album, “The Bar is Low,” poke at typical conversations had with “fuckboys” and bros that feel like they’re God’s gift to women and Earth. “I’m a picture of a noble guy / now let me explain why.” Pfft, almost all of us have heard some iteration of that before.
In an opposite manner, affection-based chagrin is especially presented on “Cold Whip Cream,” a song about sensual inadequacies, and “It’s Your Knees,” a crude ditty about physical imperfection. Murky bass lines rule over the most stoner doom track of them all, “Activia,” digging at a lack of attention between lovers or a lack of attention between a person and his genitalia.
Sneers at the mundanity of office life (“Worldwide Marine Asset Financial Analyst” and “Have You Ever Been Furniture”) and the shrill screams connecting routine life and cancer (“Waiting On My Horrible Warning”) add to Why Love Now’s discourse, but the highlight of the album comes from the other feminine presence. Ugly Girls author and poet Lindsay Hunter delivers “I’m A Man,” a spoken word declaration discussing palpable misogyny, reneged by placing the female character in control. Grody in the most hilarious of ways, “I’m A Man” shows Hunter detailing sexual innuendos centered around stationary and animalistic exhibition, as McGuinness scats on the high-hats and thunders in a tribal drumming rendering.
During this troubled time in society, humor is necessary, especially when it is at the expense of the suits who are part of the problem to begin with. Awkwardly sexual at times, but accordant with its caricatures, Why Love Now sees Pissed Jeans using their same heavy audible formula, but with keynotes that make their jest even more essential.