Open main menu

"House of Jealous Lovers" is a single by American indie rock band the Rapture, from their second studio album Echoes. The song is produced by James Murphy and Tim Goldsworthy of the DFA. It was originally released in March 2002 through DFA Records, but it was eventually re-released in 2003 where it peaked at number 27 on the UK Singles Chart. The song was designed to market the band through dance music distributors. The accompanying music video for the song is influenced by punk imagery. Upon release, it became DFA's best-selling single and helped re-establish dance-punk. The song received acclaim from music critics and was rated 16th and 6th respectively on Pitchfork[1] and NME's[2] tracks of the decade lists. The song was used in the soundtrack for the video game NBA 2K15, which was curated by famed music producer Pharrell Williams.[3]

"House of Jealous Lovers"
The Rapture - House of Jealous Lovers cover.png
Original release cover art
Single by the Rapture
from the album Echoes
  • "Silent Morning"
  • "Alabama Sunshine"
ReleasedMarch 2002 (2002-03)
StudioPlantain Recording House (New York, NY)
  • 5:58 (original version)
  • 5:04 (Echoes version)
  • Luke Jenner
  • Vito Roccoforte
  • Matt Safer
the Rapture singles chronology
"House of Jealous Lovers"
"Killing" / "Give Me Every Little Thing"
Re-release cover art
The Rapture - House of Jealous Lovers cover art.jpg

Background and releaseEdit

James Murphy co-produced the song.

The Rapture moved from San Francisco to New York in 1999 and wrote "House of Jealous Lovers" the following year.[4] They met James Murphy and Tim Goldsworthy of DFA Records at one of their first performances in New York.[5] Murphy and Goldworthy took a long time to persuade the band to work together because of a concern that making a dance song would alienate their fans.[6]

While mastering "House of Jealous Lovers", Murphy used techno music as a benchmark for the track's bass frequencies.[7] After hearing the DFA's mix, Sub Pop, the band's record label at the time, and the band both reacted negatively and initially refused to release it.[8] Vocalist Luke Jenner hated the mix, feeling that it sounded unfinished.[9] On the way to a gig, Murphy played the mix for Jonathan Galkin; Galkin credited it for his decision to join DFA Records.[6]

The Rapture originally released the song in 2002 as a limited 12" vinyl single, a format preferred by club DJs.[10][11] The single included a remix by Morgan Geist of Metro Area as the second song on the A-side and a song titled "Silent Morning" as the B-side.[12] The single format and remix were part of a strategy to market the single through dance music stores.[7]


"House of Jealous Lovers" is a dance-punk song. Its percussion section features disco hi-hat patterns and snare drums doubled with handclaps.[15][16] The DFA reshaped the percussion by layering and reversing the hi-hats and chopping the drums.[17] The song includes prominent cowbell rhythms that grow louder through the course of the song.[18] Its jagged, coarse guitar is doubled with electronic effects.[2][15][16] The sound follows British predecessors such as Gang of Four, Public Image Ltd, and Happy Mondays.[18]

The track opens and closes with long instrumental sections[7] and features lyrics largely consisting of the song's title being repeated.[4][19] Jenner said he was unsure of the subject of the song and wanted to project a sense of "invincibility".[4][20] His performance, described as a "deranged falsetto", drew comparisons to the vocals of the Cure's frontman Robert Smith.[13][15] Geist's remix removes the vocals and adds keyboard riffs. It introduces brass sections, performed by James Duncan, to the arrangement.[14]

Critical receptionEdit

"House of Jealous Lovers" received acclaim from music critics.[21] Stylus Magazine described the track as all four band members "playing their instruments as if they were leads" and continued that "nobody's been able to pull this off so well since Joy Division".[18] AllMusic said that its rhythm section was "as dynamite as anything from the late-'70s U.K. post-punk bands."[22] Pitchfork called the song "the unparalleled champion of 2002's summer anthem sweepstakes".[23]

The song placed 9th on the 2002 Pazz & Jop list,[24] and it appeared at 26th place the following year.[25] Stylus Magazine and Spin each named it the 9th best single of 2002.[26][27] Pitchfork ranked "House of Jealous Lovers" 4th on its 2003 singles list.[28]

Pitchfork placed the song 16th on its "500 best tracks of the 2000s" list.[1] Rolling Stone ranked the song 53rd on its list of the best songs of the 2000s,[29] and Slant Magazine placed it at 45th.[30] The NME listed the song sixth on its 2000s list.[2] In October 2011, NME placed the song at number 86 on its list "150 Best Tracks of the Past 15 Years".[31] Pitchfork included "House of Jealous Lovers" in its 2006 collection of The Pitchfork 500.[11] The Guardian listed the track in its "1000 songs everyone must hear".[19]

Music videoEdit

The song's music video was directed by London-based group Shynola and released in 2003.[32] The chaotic, surreal video was inspired by the collage style of old punk fliers.[33][34] It features footage of the band, animated newspaper headlines, scrapbook paraphernalia, and scenes of military conflicts.[35][36] Pitchfork listed the video as the 27th best music video of the 2000s.[32]


"House of Jealous Lovers" became DFA's best-selling single, and the label sold 20,000 vinyl copies of it.[7][37] The single reached number 27 on the UK Singles Chart in September 2003.[38]

The song's use in dance sets opened rock music for formats other than concerts.[39] It has been credited for re-establishing dance-punk during a period when rock and dance music rarely intersected.[7][40] Justin Timberlake and Timbaland have cited "House of Jealous Lovers" as an influence on their 2006 single "SexyBack".[41] Timberlake used the song for an entrance during his FutureSex/LoveShow tour.[42][43]

Track listingEdit

12" vinylEdit

Side A
1."House of Jealous Lovers"5:58
2."House of Jealous Lovers" (Morgan Geist version)5:44
Side B
1."Silent Morning"6:43

7" vinylEdit

Side A
1."House of Jealous Lovers"3:40
Side B
1."Alabama Sunshine"2:48

CD 1Edit

1."House of Jealous Lovers"3:40
2."Alabama Sunshine"2:48
3."House of Jealous Lovers" (Maurice Fulton remix)8:59

CD 2Edit

1."House of Jealous Lovers"5:06
2."House of Jealous Lovers: Cosmos vs. the Rapture" (Tom Middleton remix)6:54
3."Killing" (Ends remix)3:54


Chart (2003) Peak
UK Singles (Official Charts Company)[38] 27

Release historyEdit

Region Date Label Format Catalogue no.
  United States March 2002[45] DFA 12" dfa 2121[12]
  United Kingdom 2003 Vertigo 7" 981112-5[44]


  1. ^ a b Cohen, Ian (August 21, 2009). "The Top 500 Tracks of the 2000s: 20-1". Pitchfork. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c "NME's top 100 Tracks of the Decade". NME. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  3. ^ Williams, Katie (August 13, 2014). "Pharrell Williams' NBA 2K15 Soundtrack Revealed". IGN. Retrieved April 27, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c Bravo, Amber (August 18, 2011). "The Rapture Is Risen". The Fader. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  5. ^ Strickler, Yancey (November 2003). "Stir of Echoes". CMJ New Music Monthly (118): 41.
  6. ^ a b Bjørnersen, Martin (October 22, 2012). "Interview: Jonathan Galkin on 10 years of DFA Records". Red Bull Music Academy. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  7. ^ a b c d e Battaglia, Andy (October 2011). "Second Coming". Spin. 27 (9): 64–67. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  8. ^ Fassler, Joe (July 18, 2012). "Why, Exactly, Did LCD Soundsystem Quit?". The Atlantic. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  9. ^ Carpenter, Susan (November 13, 2003). "The house music that indie built". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  10. ^ Empire, Kitty (July 12, 2003). "Welcome match". The Observer. p. 8. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  11. ^ a b Plagenhoef, Scott; Schreiber, Ryan, eds. (November 2008). The Pitchfork 500. Simon & Schuster. pp. 168–169. ISBN 978-1-4165-6202-3.
  12. ^ a b c "The Rapture - House of Jealous Lovers 12". DFA Records. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  13. ^ a b Petridis, Alexis (August 28, 2003). "Save the wail". The Guardian. p. 19. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  14. ^ a b Kellman, Andy. "House of Jealous Lovers - The Rapture". AllMusic. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  15. ^ a b c Empire, Kitty (August 30, 2003). "Cue rapturous applause..." The Observer. p. 14. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  16. ^ a b Sylvester, Nick (January 31, 2005). "The Top 100 Singles of 2000-04". Pitchfork. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  17. ^ Reynolds, Simon (October 26, 2004). "House of Zealous Rockers". The Village Voice. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  18. ^ a b c Unterberger, Andrew (April 15, 2004). "The Rapture: House of Jealous Lovers". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  19. ^ a b "1000 songs everyone must hear". The Guardian. March 20, 2009. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  20. ^ Rosen, Alison M. (December 30, 2003). "The Music Interview: The Rapture". Nerve. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  21. ^ Menze, Jill (September 10, 2011). "Redemption Songs". Billboard. 123 (34): 28. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  22. ^ Kellman, Andy. "Echoes - The Rapture". AllMusic. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  23. ^ Schreiber, Ryan (September 9, 2003). "The Rapture: Echoes". Pitchfork. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  24. ^ Christgau, Robert. "The 2002 Pazz & Jop Critics Poll". Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  25. ^ Christgau, Robert. "The 2003 Pazz & Jop Critics Poll". Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  26. ^ Burns, Todd (December 30, 2012). "Top 20 Favorite Singles of 2002". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  27. ^ Aaron, Charles (January 2003). "Singles of the Year". Spin. 19 (1): 74.
  28. ^ Goldstein, Hartley (December 30, 2003). "Top 50 Singles of 2003". Pitchfork. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  29. ^ "100 Best Songs of the 2000s". Rolling Stone. June 17, 2011. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  30. ^ Henderson, Eric (January 25, 2010). "The 100 Best Singles of the Aughts". Slant Magazine. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  31. ^ Chester, Tim (2011). "150 Best Tracks Of The Past 15 Years". NME. Retrieved November 3, 2014.
  32. ^ a b Plagenhoef, Scott (August 31, 2009). "The Top 50 Music Videos of the 2000s". Pitchfork. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  33. ^ Burns, Todd (July 30, 2003). "Stylus Music Video Reviews, Volume I". Stylus Magazine. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  34. ^ Shearer, Jim (host) (December 12, 2003). "The Rapture". Subterranean. MTV2. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  35. ^ Sanneh, Kelefa (September 14, 2003). "Drunken Nightclubs, Remixed". New York Times. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  36. ^ Richardson, Sean (November 28, 2003). "Ryan Adams and the Rapture go disco!". The Boston Phoenix. Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved November 1, 2014. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  37. ^ Strauss, Neil (October 23, 2002). "New Life for New York Rock; The Production Team DFA Offers a Sound You Can Dance To". The New York Times. p. 18. Retrieved October 30, 2014.
  38. ^ a b "Official Singles Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  39. ^ "The Rapture Play Crash Mansion: Harriet Miers, Karl Rove Stop By". The Village Voice. October 7, 2005. Retrieved June 14, 2015.
  40. ^ Neyland, Nick (September 24, 2011). "The Rapture's Return". The Wall Street Journal: A22. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  41. ^ Weiner, Jonah (November 4, 2009). "Pop Producers Have Been Reading Their 'Pitchfork'". Slate. Retrieved October 31, 2014.
  42. ^ Orlov, Piotr (February 27, 2007). "Justin Timberlake". Pitchfork. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  43. ^ "Justin Timberlake's new album to sound like The Rapture". NME. March 23, 2007. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  44. ^ a b "Rapture, The - House Of Jealous Lovers (Vinyl)". Discogs. Retrieved June 15, 2015.
  45. ^ Matos, Michaelangelo (September 21, 2011). "The Rapture Come Home". The Village Voice. 56 (38). pp. 46–49. Retrieved June 14, 2015.

External linksEdit