Spring break essentially boils down to "Peter sleeping, eating, and watching too much TV." I can say that without exageurating.

Specifically, I've been watching a ton of MTV. You know how people are always ragging on MTV for never playing videos? Well, actually they play a lot of videos now. The things is, they literally have about one hour's worth of videos that they show in any way they can: plain videos, that video battle thing, TRL, new music... it's all the same 9 or 10 videos.

With that said, I saw part of TRL yesterday. A majority of the countdown was ridiculously good.
    Kanye West - "All Falls Down"
    This is the first song I heard from Kanye West. Again, great stuttering beats with freaky-catchy, sped-up vocal samples. This video is really cool too; it's all from West's prespective. Although if you look hard enough, the part where he's rapping in the mirror doesn't quite sync up. Love this album.

    Maroon 5 - "This Love"
    I heard this song at a party a few weeks ago. My friend Kelsey turned to me and said, "I know I shouldn't, but I really like this song." Immediately... I realized that I did, too. It's the way that dude sings the chorus: "THIS! LOVE! HAS! TAken IT'S toll ON me!" I literally saw the video seven times yesterday.
    However, this is a deceptive song. I liked it because I thought I wasn't hearing everything, that if I actually heard the whole thing a few times it would reveal more of itself to me. This was very wrong. There is nothing more to this song. It's painfully arranged verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge-chorus-fade. It's so conventional it hurts. So to everyone who feared me becoming a giant Maroon 5 fan, fear no more. However, I recommend reading the All Music Guide review of the album: The boys of Maroon 5 have certainly come a long way since their days in the indie outfit Kara's Flowers. After the band's demise in 1999, frontman Adam Levine surrounded himself with New York City's urban hip-hop culture and found a new musical calling. Ha!

    Jay-Z - "Dirt Off Your Shoulder"
    Jay-Z is just sitting in the back of a Bentley in a shirt, jeans, and baseball cap, and he's still SO COOL. So hot. Especially the video-only break down where he goes, "My name is HOV!" and the beat crashes in. Dude sweet.

    Britney Spears - "Toxic"
    This is kind of a given, but I hear this song everywhere. Parties, my roomate's computer, radio, TV, stores, other people's rooms. Everyone likes it. The video makes no sense. But it's worth it if you can get chicks to do the bouncy dance to that synth/guitar noise before the chorus. Hell yes.
Also of note in the pop world: I was looking to listen to more guilty pleasures (and to not listen to anything "indie"), so I went into the Top 40 section of iTunes radio. I clicked Virgin Radio UK... only to be shocked when "Take Me Out" came on. Damn you Brits and your damn fine pop music taste!

Except for Yellowcard. Yellowcard absolutely seriously needs to burn. No rock band can make a violin look cool. Get A FUCKING CLUE.

City Pages reviews The Walkmen and Broken Social Scene. On Hamilton of The Walkmen: From that anguished face he's making, you can tell he's singing his heart out. And maybe a small chunk of his esophagus, too.

I didn't make it to either The Walkmen or The Stills/Broken Social Scene last week because the 400 Bar blows. I was, however, lucky enough to catch The Walkmen at Let It Be records for a 6 song in-store performance. It was friggin awesome.
  1. What's in it for me?
  2. The Rat
  3. Jonathan Richman + Modern Lovers cover
  4. Little House of Savages (my request)
  5. Bows and Arrows
  6. Thinking of a Dream I Had
I heard Hamilton talking to Pete about which song to play next. Hamilton said, "That one's too loud." I was like, fuck no, I'm hearing that song. Hamilton said, We didn't bring my guitar, or our upright piano... what do you guys want to hear? I immediately said, "Little House of Savages," and Hamilton said, "Let's do it," and Matt counted off and BOOM.

The instore was amazing. Hamilton sung so hard that the store owner concluded the show by saying, "I don't think I've ever heard anyone sing that hard... holy god." They started with a slow one, but Matt was immediately bouncing up and down like a maniac. They were absolutely right next to each other, but Pete still found room to go psycho on his one note bass lines. Walter was at the front and had to use Matt's drum cases as a makeshift keyboard stand. Paul could be a band all by himself; so much sound and detail out of one guitar. Great.

Burned by the Sun has a review and photos up from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs in LA.

And I leave you with this: American Panda Gets Sex-Ed Class in China (from Jay).

Listening: Lost in Translation soundtrack

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