Artist – Violent Soho
Album – Violent Soho
Year – 2010
Genre – Alternative Rock/Modern Grunge/Punk
What we have here, ladies and gentleman, is a rare specimen of superbly executed modern grunge music from down under. That’s right, Australia’s Violent Soho deliver an absolute rage and pain filled wonder of a track: “Jesus Stole My Girlfriend.”
The slow, chugging beginning provides an excellent and tense build up, and singer Luke Boerdam’s voice is pained and labored on every word in the first verse before the band explodes into a heavy breakdown. What I like here is the contrast of the dragging verse and the monstrous prechorus and chorus. It’s easy to see why the band decided to take this approach by just looking at the lyrics of the verses:
Tried so hard
But lost to God
I thought you’re my friend
I’ll guess again
I look to the clouds
God gives me a frown
These are really personal and very sad lyrics when you consider the situation. The song talks of a girl who leaves her boyfriend after he explains that he doesn’t wish to follow her faith as rigidly as she does. This situation may be an extreme outlier, but you can tell this turn of events greatly impacted him. That whole first verse and first line of the second is pretty heartwrenching. You know he cared about this girl and really put time into caring for her. The slow movement of the verses gives him time to really lay out his most sensitive thoughts, as if he’s singing it to her.
The prechorus and chorus are the exact opposite. They’re just primal anger. It goes as follows:
This time next year I’ll be married
This time next year I’ll say sorry
But Jesus stole my girlfriend
Though he tells himself things will get better, it hurts like hell right now. The rage and screams let out in the chorus really hit you and you feel that pain that comes with trying to reconcile events surrounding any breakup. It’s the sensitive and sad followed by the angry. That’s how most breakups go, I think. This song is a perfect mirror.
On top of this, the band is just slaying. The riffs are hard and really dirty, and the melody is sultry and sort of slinks along and then bites your face off when you least expect it.
My favorite part of the song comes right after the bridge. As Boerdam sings “glorious” he holds the same note on every syllable, which sounds amazing, and then the two note guitar alternation leads into a drum kick in and then absolute musical carnage ensues. This would be the part in the show where the whole crowd looks like a churning whirlpool. By the time it’s over, you need to catch your breath. You feel like you were in that crowd. Rarely do we get an offering that so closely models the prime era of grunge in the early 90’s. Kudos to you, Violent Soho. Stay killer.
Let me know your thoughts on the song in the comments! Thanks for reading and listening!