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Jimmy Eat World tell us about conquering doubt for new album ‘Surviving’: “Your lesser self convinces you to let them have the keys”

Also, check out the band's new single 'All The Way (Stay)' and UK tour dates

Jimmy Eat World have returned with new single ‘All The Way (Stay)’ taken from their upcoming new album ‘Surviving’ – a record that deals with frontman Jim Adkins’ journey back to control after conquering “self doubt”.

Watch our full and in-depth interview with Jimmy Eat World above

Their tenth album sees them team up once again with Justin Meldal-Johnsen, the producer of their last acclaimed album ‘Integrity Blues’. Due for release on October 18, the record sees the band sonically “strip away” everything they didn’t need to focus on the core truth and emotional intensity of each song. For Adkins, he was exploring “letting go of the weights that the ego carries”.

“Everyone has a hint of that specific voice that self-doubt manifests,” Adkins told NME. “Your lesser self convinces you to let them have the keys. A lot of that stems from identifying with something that may not be true about yourself. You know, like, you’re just awkward, you’re just incapable of X, you’re just a drunk, you’re unfaithful – all of that’s only as true as you let it be. It requires you to face some uncomfortable truths about yourself, but once you’re able to do that, you’re kind of free.”

So when did Adkins realise that something had to give?

“Maybe when I quit drinking,” he replied. “I stopped drinking when I was 36, and in the process of dealing with that, you start to learn a lot of things about yourself. You start building rewards for the smaller steps you might take in facing some of those uncomfortable truths. Hopefully that reward system that you build from scratch propels you to take on more things and say yes to some things that aren’t necessarily ‘you’.”

“It puts you in a state of feeling like you’re in control. You’re not just going along with what your inner ego is telling you about you.”

Known for their songs having one foot in the political realm and other deeply in the personal, we also asked the band if their new album dealt with the divisions through society in Donald Trump’s America.

“There’s definitely something of the civilisation spiral in there,” Adkins told NME. “The song ‘Criminal Energy’ has that. ‘Congratulations is pretty gnarly too. You can’t really escape it. If we were being honest about ourselves and what is effecting us, there’s a lot of wacky polarisation in the world today so we have to comment.

“It was just kinda peaking through on the run-up to the US 2016 elections, and it’s just gotten worse since we recorded all that. It’s no longer a political argument – it’s just personal. It’s so toxic.”

Adkins continued: “‘Criminal Energy’ is about becoming the thing that you hate in other people for some sense of expediency. Trump is a good example. Even with a lot of the main core conservative beliefs and values you’re like, ‘This guy? Really?’ Out of fear and anger, he was able to tap into people’s feelings of disenfranchisement and just harness it.

“People might become shocked at who they become, frothing at the mouth at Trump rallies. No one escapes the capacity to do wrong. That’s what happens when your buttons are being pushed with fear and anger. That’s a mainline that gives your lesser self fuel to thrive.”

Watch our full and in-depth interview with the band at the top of the page, as Jimmy Eat World also open up about having been friends since childhood, their evolution in sound for the new album, their guilt-free love of saxophone, the rise of the women’s movement in the US, and the potential of celebrating 20 years of ‘Bleed American’.

Jimmy Eat World, 2019. Credit: Oliver Halfin

The tracklist to ‘Surviving’ is:

1.    Surviving
2.    Criminal Energy
3.    Delivery
4.    555
5.    One Mil
6.    All The Way (Stay)
7.    Diamond
8.    Love Never
9.    Recommit
10.  Congratulations

Jimmy Eat World’s upcoming tour dates are:

UK release week shows: 

OCTOBER
17 – Leadmill, Sheffield
19 – Banquet Records, Kingston
20 – Metropolis Studios, London

US ‘Surviving’ shows:

NOVEMBER
2 – Ft. Collins, CO, Washington’s
4 – Wichita, KS, Cotillion Ballroom
5 – Lincoln, NE, Bourbon Theatre
6 – Madison, WI, The Sylvee
8 – East Moline, IL, The Rust Belt
9 – Bloomington, IN, Bluebird Nightclub
10 – Grand Rapids, MI, Intersection
12 – Harrisburg, PA, The Capitol Room @ HMAC
13 – South Burlington, VT, Higher Ground Ballroom
15 – Poughkeepsie, NY, The Chance
16 – Sayreville, NJ, Starland Ballroom
18 – Wilmington, DE, The Queen (Wilmington)
19 – Richmond, VA, The National
20  – Asheville, NC, The Orange Peel
21 – Athens, GA, 40 Watt Club
22 – Orlando, FL, Florida Man Music Festival