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Single Review: Jewel – “Serve The Ego”

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Vanity is the new religion, according to Jewel, in the earnest “Serve The Ego”

A snowy guitar and serene drums open the single, creating a conflicted tone. Jewel looks at herself in the mirror. She admires her sun-streaked blonde hair and how it frames her face. She likes her emerald-hued eyes which sparkle at any sign of light. The mirror is her master. If there is an imperfection, she must rid herself of it. She is supposed to analyze and criticize herself every morning. The mirror gives and takes away her self-esteem at will.

“Mirror, mirror/Do you like/What you see?/I’ll dance for you/If you dance for me/Who says a woman/Cannot serve?/It would be my pleasure/Who says it is/Not my destiny/To let you control me?”

An electric guitar springs in the chorus. She observes in the club that everyone is glamorous and standoffish as they sip their fad drinks. In the club, everyone is vying to gain the most attention, screw the gorgeous person there and to be the most impressive. They are stroking their own egos and the deity is themselves.

“Underneath the disco light/Everybody’s feelin’ all right/Get on your hands and knees/And praise the new deity/Serve the ego/Serve the ego.”

It’s a cutthroat atmosphere. People crash and manipulate each other on a whim. However, she enjoys the fashion and the look of a clubgoer. The sexual abandon and costume aspect of it excites her.

“Two ships sailing/On a neon sea/Eat the flesh/Spit out the seeds/Feathered hair/And lame heels/What turns me on/Is so surreal.”

After the chorus, the serene drums return for the bridge. She notes that it’s a fickle culture. What may be cool tonight, may be passe by the next week.

“Tut tut, oh, to discover oh/Oh no, you’re yesterday’s lover.”

The chorus is sung once.

Jewel “mmm’s” to close the single.

“Serve The Ego” is a decent social commentary about hedonism. However, Jewel’s grim demeanor drains the fun from it. With lyrics like “underneath the disco light/everybody’s feelin’ all right” a touch of irony would be welcome. She does participate in clubbing often enough to know she likes it. The single received the dance remix treatment, which cut to the core of it. The remixed versions improve upon it greatly and are the recommended listen.

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