The Junior Varsity - Wide Eyed (Cover Artwork)

The Junior Varsity

Wide Eyed (2005)


One of the current trends in popular music is indie/synth rock. Bands like Modest Mouse and the Killers are becoming success stories and their latest singles air all over the airwaves. But as of late, emo is starting to take over the spot that's currently held by bands like the Killers and Modest Mouse. So I wasn't surprised to see a band that takes the current trend of music and mixes it with the emo scene.

On the album Wide Eyed, the Junior Varsity sound like your textbook emo band. Some barely there guitar verses that throw hooks and try to sound catchy at the courses and vocals that go from almost near-spoken to high-pitched, almost whiny singing. It wouldn't be to much of a surprise for some to like this album because, in the end, it's almost a straightforward emo CD. From the music to the vocals, and even the clichéd lyrics, you'd think there is nothing unique or different about the Junior Varsity.

What makes Wide Eyed different than say, Hawthorne Heights' latest disc, is they have something different about them. The synth and keys throughout the album make Junior Varisty somewhat different than all the other emo bands. After the novelty of listening to a band that tries to sound unique is over, the keys aren't all too prominent or over-thrilling and don't seem to fit to their potential. Listening to "Mad For Medusa," I liked what they did in that department, but elsewhere it just doesn't help the other flawed areas that the Junior Varsity have.

The Junior Varsity get cred on Wide Eyed for being different than every other band, but in the end, don't capitalize on it enough and it can't seem to save the fact that the majority of Wide Eyed is just like every other Victory emo band. The fancy cover art or "Mad For Medusa" may draw you in, but this is one ride you shouldn't partake in.