Now, we all love Joe Keery. Whether it’s because of his iconic roles such as Stranger Things’ Steve Harrington and Kurt Kunkle in Spree or because of his funny and extremely likable personality in interviews and press tours, Joe Keery is certainly one of our favorite celebrities at the moment. However, did you know that he has also been releasing music for years? If you didn’t, then, firstly, you’ve been seriously missing out. Secondly, fear not as you’re about to get a complete run-down of Joe Keery’s music career.
Who is Djo?
Joe Keery first started to release music as a member of the Chicago-based rock band Post Animal. While the band still remains active and actually just supported 5 Seconds of Summer at the Chicago stop of their Take My Hand Tour, Joe, unfortunately, had to leave the band in 2019 due to his acting commitments.
Since leaving Post Animal, Joe has embarked on his solo career journey and began to release music as Djo, with his critically acclaimed and flawless first album Twenty Twenty being released in 2019 and giving us beautiful singles like ‘Chateau (Feel Alright)’ and ‘Roddy.’
Now, however, Joe is gearing up to release his brand new album DECIDE, set to bless our ears on September 16th. So far, Joe has released three singles from the album, with the most recent being the introspective ‘Figure You Out’ which we absolutely adore.
While we love Joe’s music as a whole, his excellent lyrics are our personal favorite part of his discography. So, we’re here today to discuss some of our favorite lyrics from Djo’s recent singles ‘Gloom,’ ‘Change,’ and ‘Figure You Out.’
“It’s easy to see it all with you, it might be right there // Something’s happening to me // A passing glance I see // In your eyes // The man that I could be” – ‘Change’
‘Change’ blends Joe’s smooth and unique vocals with an upbeat synth instrumentation to create a brightly colored song that will instantly get stuck in your head. The song discusses the idea of feeling detached from conversations and reality but ultimately seeking to change. In these lyrics, Joe describes how he can easily see a changed future when he is with his partner, contrasting the lyrics of the verses where he expresses his reluctance and issues with change. He also describes how his partner sees him differently than he sees himself and that makes him want to be a better man for them. How romantic!
“That’s life // That’s death // Your girlfriend scares me // She’s got bad breath” – ‘Gloom’
‘Gloom’ is the second single from DECIDE and discusses a toxic friendship that Joe is trying to get out of, reflected in lyrics such as “I’m sick of hanging out and now I’m ready to go.” His desperation to get out, and frustration with this person is reflected in the quick-paced tempo and the frantic nature of lines like “That’s life // That’s death.” The song is full of witty jabs and remarks, but our personal favorite is “Your girlfriend scares me // She’s got bad breath.” While being cheeky and hilarious, this line serves to further re-affirm the desperation to get out of this friendship as Joe simply doesn’t care about what he says anymore and is simply “ready to go.”
“I’ve been trying to figure you out // Is the memory really mine? // Is the story I just told fake?” – ‘Figure You Out’
‘Figure You Out’ is the most recent single from the DECIDE album. Compared to ‘Change’ and ‘Gloom,’ ‘Figure You Out’ is a much more stripped-back and relaxed track that features a jazzy instrumentation that feels reminiscent of an 80s synth track that we’re sure even Steve “the hair” Harrington would approve of. The introspective lyrics discuss the idea of identity and trying to better understand yourself, ultimately creating a sense of uncertainty and self-doubt. “Is the memory really mine?” and “Is the story I just told fake?” suggest a sense of detachment from reality and feeling like you no longer understand your own identity. Identity and reality seem to be consistent themes within the songs that we’ve heard so far from DECIDE so it’s safe to assume that they will be present throughout the whole record.
We can’t wait to hear the rest of the album! You can get your hands on a physical or digital copy by pre-ordering here.