Single Review: Jewel “Break Me”

Break Me
Album: This Way
Year: 2002

Jewel makes love to her boyfriend in the passionate and subtle “Break Me.”

A keyboard holds a single, soft note throughout the first verse as Jewel describes the setting. It’s a place where both feel safe and secure. Although she lets her boyfriend see her physically naked, she tells him she has emotional flaws. Flaws that he could exploit by only saying a pointed remark or holding onto her arm tightly, causing her to struggle to get free. But while they are together, she is thinking solely of their own secrets and memories. (“I will meet you/In some place/Where the light lends itself/To soft repose/I will let you undress me/But I warn you/I have thorns/Like any rose/And you could hurt me/With your bare hands/You could hurt me/With the sharp end of what you say/But I’m lost to you know/And there’s no/Amount of reason/That could save.”) A drum is tapped quietly while a guitar strums calmy in the background.

Both instruments raise the volume a notch for the chorus. She wants him to overwhelm her with his love for her. (“So break me/Take me/Just let me/feel your arms again/Break me/I’ll let you make me/Just let me/feel your love again.”)

As they kiss, she feels like she’s drowning in his feelings for her. Every whisper of “I love you” in her ear overjoys her. (“Feels like being underwater/Now that I’ve let go/And lost control/Water kisses fill my mouth/Water fills my soul.”)

In the bridge, she tells him to kiss her. The touch of his lips upon her causes her heart to flutter. (“Kiss me once/Or maybe twice/Oh, it never felt so nice.”)

The chorus ends the single. At the end, Jewel sings acapella “feel your love again.”

In the tender “Break Me,” Jewel finally becomes an adult. She’s no longer the bittersweet teenager singing about living in the bus. She’s older now, experiencing complex emotions which her music reflects. For the second time, she exceeds expectations. (The first being Jewel’s dance album 0304 which I quickly judged but grew to appreciate.)

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