Why Love Now, the newest and rather emotively-titled album from Pissed Jeans, is possibly their most accessible release yet. For many bands, that’s usually an indicator of a drop in quality as well, but I’ve found myself enjoying this album much more than the band’s more critically-acclaimed, abrasive works, such as Hope for Men or King of Jeans, and it’s no secret that the new accessibility is the key to its success.
On Why Love Now, Pissed Jeans turn in their restrained noise-scapes and comically-mundane lyrics for a more ‘traditional’ noise rock and lyrics which, whilst still occasionally completely meaningless (see the tracks ‘Worldwide Marine Asset Financial Analyst’ and ‘Have You Ever Been Furniture’ for some delightful examples), are now mainly focused on a loose concept regarding an almost parodic view of masculinity and the banality of love, which culminated in the absurd female-led spoken-word interlude ‘I’m A Man’ at the album’s halfway point.
Musically, some highlights include the single ‘The Bar Is Low,’ which is easily the most accessible track on the album, and as stated, it’s a style which the band has very successfully transitioned into with this record, to the point where it towers over many of the tracks played in the older style, such as the weaker ‘Activia’ from the album’s back-end.
Perhaps there are those who, in appreciating the artistry of the past’s older works, will shun this album as a step in the wrong direction, or will see the album’s ideas as a collection of quirky eccentricities, in place of the innovative experiments of the past. These are legitimate criticisms, and are certainly not unfounded, but the accuracy of such statements should not be viewed as reason to dismiss the album outright. Indeed, in a genre as consistently focused on abrasion as Noise Rock, oftentimes it is the more accessible records which prove to be the most forward-thinking, and one need not look further than this very album in order to prove that.