WE REVIEW THE NEW SINGLE FROM JOE KING AND THE JAYS – LOVE’S LIKE A PAIR OF JEANS
According to Joe King, writing depressive love songs is too easy. He tries to ‘keep it light-hearted and fun’ and, perhaps most importantly, wants not to ‘take [himself] to seriously’. This probably explains why King, accompanied by The Jays, saw fit to release a single called ‘Love’s Like a Pair of Jeans’.
Oddly a rarity, this is a band who sound delighted to be making music. It’s only their third single but there is a joyous irreverence to proceedings. It might not have the sardonic edge of cult bands like Half Man Half Biscuit, but The Jays have am enjoyable silliness to them.
Musically, it’s a straightforward track. Broadly punk, it’s far tamer than some of the genre’s mainstays, but the intention has to be for the lyrics to be abundantly audible – they are, after all, the focus.
So, the title. How exactly is love akin to a pair of jeans? It’s summarised in the chorus’s most prominent lyric: ‘grow up, grow out, grow into me’. Three things that jeans do that are analogous to growing up and finding love, growing out of love, and growing into love respectively.
The analogy and turn-of-phrase is so sweet that most of what else happens in the song is side-lined. This is perhaps with reason. While the song is consummately recorded and produced, it does in turn feel a little over-calculated, particularly with the guitar solo.
But this takes nothing away from what King and his band have created. An all-too-rare punk song where the tongue remains firmly in-cheek, and it’s all the more entertaining for it.