A thesis on what does and doesn’t constitute OK behaviour in a relationship, lead singer Heather Baron-Gracie spends the entire song playing the part of someone who is damn near obsessed with their partner, to the point where old pictures, other names, and previous flames can’t even be mentioned. According to Baron-Gracie, the track comes from a very real place.
“Some may see it as ridiculous,” Baron-Gracie says, “but I love a bit of jealousy – not too much, but just enough… I want jealousy in a relationship because it shows me the person only has eyes for me and me only.” Maybe you see that as brutal honesty, maybe you see it as being toxic, but it’s definitely a solid topic to cover in rock music.
At its core, ‘Jealousy’ is basically an Olivia Rodrigo song – pop music dressed up in the guise of another genre. The chorus is pure power pop, while the guitar lines throughout the verses are as generic as crunchy rock chords get. There’s a sweet little fakeout towards the end just as you expect a solo to come roaring through: instead, the band simply drops down to a softer volume and keeps on churning out the song without much fanfare.
Still, that’s not enough to turn ‘Jealousy’ into anything mind-blowing. Kudos to Pale Waves for coming up with an infectious hook right at the centre of the song. That’s always been their biggest asset, and maybe if they’d be more willing to shed the bog-standard rock sound that they insist on going back to, they could find something really interesting. For now, we’re going to keep getting songs like ‘Jealousy’ – not good, not bad, just toothless soft hard rock.
Check out the video for ‘Jealousy’ down below. Unwanted is set for an August 12th release.