Generally when a band does a tour where they play an older album in its entirety, it makes me feel like they know their best stuff was years ago and that they have finally realized their last couple of records have turned off their original fanbase. So playing the record that was responsible for most of their original fanbase always seems like nothing more than an attempt to get those fans back.
I really think that this is what Jimmy Eat World is doing with the Clarity x 10 Tour, but it was surprisingly awesome. I was pretty much expecting to be disappointed. So much so that I actually wrote half of a review yesterday before the show. You’ll never get to read it, but it did exist as a draft for a few hours. My biggest concern was that they were going to keep playing for an hour or so after Clarity, like Alkaline Trio did on the Godammit tour. They did not. They walked off stage right after Goodbye Sky Harbor and then came back to do a five or six song encore of mostly post-Clarity hits. They knew exactly when to call it a night and it never felt long at all. I would have like to have heard some stuff from Static Prevails, maybe some Call It In The Air, but I think the length of the set ended up being absolutely perfect.
The most shocking part of the night was that they played No Sensitivity, easily my favorite song by them. I couldn’t believe it. It’s not like it’s on an album or anything anyone would expect them to play these days. I don’t even think half the crowd had ever even heard it before. And the nailed it. It was amazing and it made my night.
As for Clarity, they pretty much played the entire thing perfectly. I was very impressed. And it didn’t get boring at any point either. The only complaint that I have is that they didn’t play all sixteen minutes of Goodbye Sky Harbor. They cut it down to about seven. Though, they did make up for it was some cool ass live looping. The shortened version was expected though since they had posted online that they weren’t going to.
Overall, I really liked the show a lot. It was done perfectly…except that they played The Middle. I hate that song, but it is arguably their biggest hit ever. And I could have done without the dude standing next to me singing louder than the Jim and Tom, but that’s not Jimmy Eat World’s fault. Speaking of singing though, I realized last night that of all the bands I like that have two singers and one of which is named Tom, Jimmy Eat World is the only one where I like Tom’s voice better. I wish he sang more.