Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Pop Show

FUSE premiered a new show last week: The Pop Show. My dad recorded it and sent it to me (damn you college and your lack of good channels) and I have mixed feelings. It’s a mix of music videos and interviews, but I think they’re trying to make it a replacement for SURS and failing miserably.

The show starts with “Viva la Vida” by Coldplay. Which isn’t old, really, but it’s from last summer and it’s not exactly new. It did, however, make me remember how much I love the last four shots of that video, as the band dissolves into paint chips. They followed it up with “Gives You Hell” by AAR, and alright, that’s more current. Then they switched to an interview with Alexis Bledel and Zach Gilford of the new movie Post Grad. The host of the show, Allison Hagendorf, tried, but she couldn’t really elicit anything of interest out of the two. Allison herself is a little lacking on the personality, which was disappointing. Then we switched to “Hit Me Baby, One More Time” by Britney Spears.

Okay, FUSE. What exactly do you think you’re doing here? We are no longer in the mid nineties. Britney Spears no longer passes for anything close to innocent. Pigtails? Midriffs? Huge choreographed dance numbers in a high school gym? We are passed this! Let’s move on!

And we did move on, to “Don’t Trust Me” by 3Oh!3. This is the weirdest group of videos ever. Then back to Post Grad, where they played a lackluster game of “How well do you know your costars?” and showed an awkwardly cut clip of the movie that none of the three people in the studio knew how to respond to. Also, can I note right now, after seeing only 30 seconds of the movie, that the plot line is going to involve the boy being in love with the girl all along, but her being too caught up in herself and her job to realize it, until the very end when she realizes that her male best friend is the perfect man for her. Could romantic comedies please try and find a new plot? Please?

“So What” by P!nk, “Umbrella” by Rihanna, and “Not Meant to Be” by Theory of a Deadman followed. The show closed with the only truly current video, “Love Drunk” by Boys Like Girls. It was the first time I’d seen the video, and I don’t hate the song. I’ve never been a BLG fan but they’re headlining a show I’m seeing in November and it looks like it might be fun. The lead singer also looks like my hair stylist. Huh.

Overall I wasn’t impressed by the show, but they advertise upcoming interviews with Panic! at the Disco and Cobra Starship, which makes sense as these are groups actually related to music. Remember FUSE, you were the last home of MUSIC television. Don’t let that go!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dead Bodies Can Be not.

This is absolutely the worst CPR I have ever seen.

A Weekend at Pete Rose's (Headfirst Slide Into Cooperstown On A Bad Bet) from Shane Vald├ęs on Vimeo.

Also, I still cannot listen to this song without thinking of the dancing bears.

I have no other comments on this right now. Some kid in my dorm is badly playing the riff to "Smoke on the Water" over and over and over again and someone is fighting back with jazz and saxophones and there is some sort of drumming that may or may not be from Rock Band and I think I might drop physiology.

But this video made me smile.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

New Perspective

Panic! at the Disco released the music video for "New Perspective" today. There's... well there's not much of a plot. It's basically Brendon and Spencer looking hot and walking through a high school. Which isn't bad, mind you, but there's not much substance. I get that it's related to Jennifer's Body (I mean the blatant advertising on one girl's t-shirt didn't help the video feel less weird) which takes place in a high school and has girls fighting (right?) but other than that... Maybe it's about them just being above all the high school bullshit, breezing by it and not caring. Or maybe it's about how that's what they want but really, in the end, high school rips them to pieces. I dunno. Here have some boys in suits:

EDIT: I almost never go back and change entries, but the video I originally put up was no longer available, so I embedded this new version, which has scenes from Jennifer's Body overlaid on about 50% of the video. This does explain why there was so little plot to the video, if it was going to be intercut with different things, but oh my god, this looks like the cheesiest movie ever. Agh!

Monday, August 24, 2009

School, Felicia Day, and Elevator

I'm currently packing for school, trying to pack 20 years of clothes and memories and music into boxes and bags and I just need a break. I can't believe I go back to school tomorrow, start my third year of college tomorrow. I've over scheduled myself and had to make some sacrifices to try and fit everything in, and sometimes I wonder if it's all worth it. If I look at my life at forty, even thirty, and all I'm doing is going back and forth from home to a research lab every day, studying model organisms and spending all day looking through a microscope, I'm not sure I'll be able to take it. I won't be okay with that. I need something more, something more exciting, something more unusual. But I'm good at science, and kinda sucky at film. I can't sing worth a damn and I'm not sure the noise I make on a number of different instruments could be considered music. I don't know what I'm going to do.

Woah. Okay, emo kid. Step back and refocus on the real reason for this post: Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog.

I just discovered this last night, though it's been around for a while. But Cake Wrecks (a fabulous blog that showcases cake disasters) had a post on some not so wrecky cakes that featured elements from Dr. Horrible. Of course I had to watch the full musical, a 45-minute drama made for the internet. It wasn’t amazing, but it was certainly very good and worth watching. Here:

It has Neil Patrick Harris, which is awesome, but more importantly it had Felicia Day. I love the stuff that she does, most notable The Guild. The Guild is a web series based on a group of gamers in an fictitious MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game for you non geeks out there) and their lives both in and outside of the game. The first season is absolutely amazing. The main character is played by Day who delivers her lines with a certain wit and honestly that had me doubled over laughing. The second season was also quite good, and the third premieres soon. I think. You should absolutely check out the first season. Tell me you don’t get hooked after the first episode:

And finally, the way I found The Guild way back when in their first season was because one of my other favorite web series, Elevator, was up for a YouTube award. As I voted for them, I checked out the other contestants in their category and found The Guild. Elevator, however, is a funny, fast, smart show about employees in an office building, told in short sketches that take place in the building’s elevator. Everyone’s favorite character is Harold, the super smart and badass janitor, who rules the building with an iron mop. What follows is my favorite episode. It’s quick, but hilarious.

I just filled an entire box with Harry Potter books. How do I have so much stuff? I forbid myself from buying more clothing. That money would be better spent on music. However the music box is ginormous and I’m going to be carrying it up five flights of stairs. Awesome.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Steven's Untitled Myspace

I miss Steven's Untitled Rock Show. I've spent most of this morning watching old episodes on the TiVo and doodling, and I just miss the way the show combined videos you loved with videos you'd never seen and awesome band interviews. Fuse was wrong in canceling it. But I found where the amazing Steven Smith has gone to... Myspace.

Yeah, I know.

The MySpace Music Feed: Panic! At The Disco and Taylor Momsen

Things learned from this webisode: Taylor Momsen's fashion mullet isn't for Gossip Girl, it's for a band, Panic! At the Disco is not ruling out the possibility of getting back together far in the future, and 3OH!3 took the least interesting song from their album and made it into a single. Huh.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


Tomorrow is my last day of work for the summer. Then it's ten days off and back to six classes and three jobs. Sleeping? Who has time for that? So in a week of relatively sad music news (the death of Les Paul) I figured I'd give you two acoustic performances that greatly improved my outlook on two recent songs.

The first is "Good Girls Go Bad" by Cobra Starship, acoustic for a radio station. I'm usually not a huge fan of Victoria's voice (though everything else she does seems to be pretty fabulous) but I like it here, especially when backed by Ryland. I actually really love the song acoustic. Go figure. It's kind of funny, since I fell in love with Cobra Starship through some acoustic performances they did for Tagworld (which doesn't really exist anymore) a few years back. I just remembered how awesome those were. Back on track, Alex! Here is the acoustic performance of "Good Girls Go Bad":

And just for good measure, here's one of the Tagworld sessions. This is how I met Cobra Starship almost three years ago, two boys on guitars and a punk frontman with a Boston Red Sox hat.

Also, here is Brendon Urie playing "New Perspective" acoustic some time in the past week. His voice. His voice. It gets me every time. And he looks like he's having so much fun, even if I bounce back and forth between thinking this song is about a girl, a guy, the breakup, blowjobs, or surfing. Maybe it's all of those. I don't know, I don't care, I just love it acoustic. This is what I originally suggested that the song needed, to be stripped down bare.

Oops, did I not warn you in advance about the Pete Wentz faux blowjob? Sorry. I was too busy listening to that voice.

This schizophrenic acoustic post brought to you by WEEZER'S 7TH ALBUM, out October 27th. Actually, it's not brought to you by them at all. I'm just pumped.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Hot Mess CD Review

Friday, I opened the mailbox to a thick envelope with a CD case inside. Score! I’d sent away for the preorder of Hot Mess and knew that this was it. There was a moment of anticipation – the first five hundred people got special covers, signed by members of the band, from a CobraCam episode where they made fake covers. I opened it to find:


The CD on the left is my version of Hot Mess, with a special cover signed by Victoria Asher. Sweet! The CD on the right is Viva La Cobra! But the thing infront of the cover is the one of a kind Polaroid from the band that I received with that preorder back in 2007. Win!

So I’ve been listening to the CD over and over again in the past few days, and I like it. I really do. I’ve kind of trashed on this album in the past few months, calling “Pete Wentz is the Only Reason We’re Famous” “not profound”, labeling “Good Girls Go Bad” as “too poppy, too average, too regular,” and being less that pumped about “Hot Mess.” I hated the cover art, and I worried that Gabe Saporta had forgotten that his band contained instruments other than a bunch of synths.

But then I listened to the full album together and I got it. It’s not classic Cobra, but they’ve already made “While the City Sleeps, We Rule the Streets.” If they made the same album every time we’d get bored, they’d get bored, and it would stop being fun. I still wish there was a little more guitar presence on the record, but it’s good. I’ve listened to it enough now that the songs are sorting themselves into groups.

Favorites: My absolute favorite song off the album is “I May Be Rude, But I’m the Truth” which is a bonus track, so not everyone will get to hear it. That’s a damn shame because the chorus is so catchy everyone would be singing this song with the windows rolled down and the music pouring out. The opening notes remind me of something, but I can’t quite place my finger on it. Maybe an 80s Hip-Hop/Rap song? I’m not sure. Something. But it’s got this great attitude: “I never needed your sympathy, ‘cause I got my own money, and there ain’t nothing you can do to me.” “Put it in your blog, I promise no one gives a fuck.” Alright, Gabe, I will, because you had me at “Sha na na na.”

Other favorites include “Pete Wentz is the Only Reason We’re Famous” which is a great live crowd song even if it’s not profound. Not everything has to be. It’s also very reminiscent of old Cobra Starship. “Living in the Sky with Diamonds” is great too. I caught on at “the last thing on her mind is growing up, she’ll kiss the sky before she’s givin’ up” but the chorus is really pretty. It’s still got a great dance beat, but it’s the song you sing along to while smiling at your best friend in the crowd next to you and taking a breather from screaming and thrashing.

Songs that will be big hits: “Good Girls Go Bad.” Obviously. I am so, so proud of Cobra Starship that this song is on the radio and on TV and all over the place. They’ve worked hard for this, and they deserve this. They’re getting fan backlash for “selling out” or some shit, but that’s completely unfair. They deserve this, and I’m happy for them, not afraid of losing them. If there’s one band that I have complete faith will never forget their fans, it’s Cobra Starship.

“You’re Not in on the Joke” also has great potential to be big. I’m planning an epic music video shoot for this with some of my friends. Fabulous. There are also guitars in here, which is great. “Hot Mess” could also be huge if they put it out soon. Good beats, catchy chorus, and a story line that has both the bad girls and the good girls digging it.

Oddballs: “Nice Guys Finish Last” opens the CD with sirens and a schoolyard chant. This was the first thing I listened to and I was so afraid for where this CD was going, but then about three hours later I realized I had been singing it in my head for about ten minutes. It’s got a group of girls chanting “bad boys, bad boys, all we want is bad boys.” Which is true, of course, but it’s a little incongruous with the rest of the songs. It’s a good song, but it doesn’t fit.

“The World Will Never Do” has some guest rapping on it, and some bad grammar. The chorus sticks in my head but the synth in the background reminds me a tiny bit of something they’d play at a hip-hop ballpark.

Songs that just aren’t sticking: “Fold Your Hands Child” is a good song, but I keep having to listen to it to remember what’s in it. It’s a bit slower than the rest of the CD and it just isn’t making much of an impression, which sucks, because now that I’m listening to it and writing this I kind of like it. Huh. “Wet Hot American Summer” isn’t really sticking either, but listening to it I’m not as upset about this one.

Song that will make me dance: “Move Like You Gonna Die.” It’s right in the title. And the chorus. And the bridge. This song wants me to move, and I’ll do it.

Midtown?: “The Scene is Dead; Long Live the Scene” started and I wondered if maybe this song was a reject from Forget What You Know. Then the synths kicked in and it wasn’t, but for a moment there I was worried.

Is it the next great album? Nope. But I like it, I’ll dance to it, I’ll sing to it, and I’ll force my friends to listen to it.

The CD came with Fan Club Membership codes inside. Gabe Saporta had asked fans on his blog last week whether or not we wanted a Fan Club, and I’d thought the resounding answer had been no. I was pretty impartial – I’ve never wanted to front the money to join a fan club, but this one is free. I don’t think Cobra needs one – they already treat their fans like gold, and we already get presales and get to meet them. We'll see how it goes.

Final score: 3.5 Fangs Up out of 5.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Rock Show

Blink-182 at the Comcast Center, Mansfield, MA, August 6

This is my 100th blog post! What better way to celebrate than a fantastic concert.

Through presales and frantic phone calls, I got a second row ticket to the Blink-182 show in Mansfield last Thursday. It was awesome. There was a spotlight and some hanging wires directly in front of me, blocking my view a bit, but it was closer than I have ever been to a stage and I was so pumped that the slight obstructions didn’t matter.

First up was Chester French. It started off horrible, but was okay by the end, which averages out to meh. I’m not wasting time on meh, other than to note that the lead singer’s high waisted white jeans, tucked in striped polo, and curly red hair made him look like an overgrown four year old. That was mean. But true. Also, Clinton Sparks danced on stage during one of their songs. It was weird.

Next up was Panic! at the Disco. They are the reason why I bought this ticket, and I was so excited to see them live now that they’re a little rearranged. Ian Crawford was standing right in front of me, and I could not be happier that they asked him to play guitar on tour. I’ve made it known before that he is one of my favorite guitarists, but that I really couldn’t stand The Cab. But here, it worked. He rocked out, they let him play some cool stuff, and he looked like he was having so much fun. He sang a lot too, and I was surprised by his voice. It’s actually pretty good. He also played maybe 5 guitars in a set of about seven songs, which just made me smile. One of them has a sun painted on it, which you can see a little in these pictures:

IMG_3463 IMG_3462

(Do you see how close I was? Do you see this picture? It was awesome. I filmed some of the best concert footage I’ve ever shot that night.)

Anyways, their other new acquisition was Dallon Weekes. He looked scared to death the entire time. This is understandable, however. His own band (musical project?) The Brobecks sounds cool, but I don’t think he’s ever played in front of huge crowds before, and his second night on tour with P!ATD he’s playing a sold out show in front of twenty thousand people. It is understandable that he would be a little uneasy. Once he relaxes a bit and gets more comfortable with it he’ll be fine. Don’t worry Dallon, we love you already for stepping in and helping the boys out. Just have fun.

But of course, Brendon and Spencer were the two to watch, because this is their band. And their band played the shit out of its songs. I couldn’t see Spencer well due to the enormous spotlight in front of me, but Brendon had energy and emotion and that voice. He changed back and forth between singing and running around with the mic to playing the keyboard to playing the guitar. There were some technical difficulties (his guitar didn’t work during “That Green Gentleman” and he kept strumming and nothing was coming out and he wasn’t happy about it – his mic also cut out later on as well, leaving the crowd to pick up the vocals for a few seconds. Come on Comcast Center, get your sound guys on top of things!) They played mainly songs from A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out, a couple from Pretty.Odd and “New Perspective.” I like “New Perspective” much better live than recorded. It makes more sense seeing them play it and put emotion into it. They sounded great, they’re still doing well, and I’m excited for new music. I would also be perfectly happy if Ian and Dallon stayed with them (though I’m pretty sure they’re only here for this tour). I was slightly disappointed with one thing: they used a track for the strings and chimes and intro guitar on “I Write Sins not Tragedies.” I would much have preferred to lose the violins and chimes and just watch them play what they could.

(Here is where I would insert live footage that I shot, but Comcast, my internet provider, has decided I don't need internet for more than ten minutes at a time, meaning that every ten minutes it shuts off and my uploads fail. Awesome.)

Next up was Fall Out Boy. Also very awesome. They played a longer set, as was expected, and got the crowd on their feet and screaming. Their stage set for this tour is pretty cool – there’s a backdrop but on stage there are just three huge, light up letters: F, O, B. As they were setting up, the roadies had them backwards for a minute and the crowd started chanting “Bof, Bof, Bof” which the crew onstage thought was hysterical.

The last time I saw Fall Out Boy play was in April on the Believers Never Die Part Deux Tour, and I’d felt that they were tired. They didn’t seem into it and it was a little disheartening. This time was very different. Maybe it was just because I was standing in front of Joe Trohman. I’ve never paid much attention to him before, so I’m not sure if this is something new or just something I’ve missed, but that is one happy dude. He was climbing on things and throwing his arms in the air and just generally looking like he was having a good time. Also, he sings? I didn’t know this! FOB talked to the crowd a lot more this time too, which made me feel better. They moved around the stage, they jumped and ran and they looked like they were feeling it. Pete was also very in touch with the crowd, and was just stripping picks from the stage to throw out. They were happy. Good.

Also, Patrick Stump’s voice is just fabulous live. And Pete Wentz (who kept bouncing over to my side of the stage and standing about 10 feet from me – Hi Pete!) looked like he was having fun and playing that bass like a champ. Andy is always a little frightening when he drums, like he’s attacking them and yet loving every minute of it. They played a cover of “Don’t Stop Believing” and had Brendon Urie come out and sing on it. The crowd went absolutely wild. Twenty thousand people all singing along to that song is a sight to behold.

They ended the set with “Saturday,” for which I have previously expounded my love. I will be heartbroken if they ever stop ending sets with that song. It’s a perfect set closer, the crowd goes wild, and Pete Wentz gets to scream.

Finally, Blink-182. Full disclosure: I knew only four Blink songs before that night. Seriously. It wasn’t that I didn’t like them, I’d just never really gotten into that kind of music when they were popular. Now I really wish that this was the music I grew up listening to. It’s relatable to everyone, which is, I think, why no one can really hate them. Maybe you don’t love them, but if someone puts on Blink-182 you can bob your head along and know what the next lyrics will be because it’s just pages taken out of everyone’s adolescence and youth. Tom DeLonge has a dirty mouth, and Mark Hoppus is still 14 inside and if you weren’t these boys when you were growing up, you knew them.

They played through a huge amount of songs, bantered with each other, bantered with the crowd, and won my heart. Tom DeLonge did that weird stalking, prancing thing that I remember from when I saw Angels and Airwaves open for Weezer. Mark Hoppus bounced and jumped and played. Travis Barker killed that drumset.

Tom DeLonge made some comment about the crowd only being able to dream about being as awesome as Mark Hoppus. “Sure, they can only dream about playing bass a little out of time and singing a little out of tune,” Hoppus replied. Well, yeah. Maybe they’re not the world’s best musicians. But that crowd was moving and screaming and having so much fun.

I feel like the best, however, was the flying drumset. Yeah. A flying drumset. As the encore started, Travis Barker was strapped down in his chair and the set was about 3 feet off the ground. And then suddenly the cables pulled up and he was 20 feet above the ground. Then it started to swing. And then it rotated, almost vertical. It was indescribable. And this is all while Barker is playing some of the best drum playing I’ve ever heard. The crowd went absolutely nuts, and rightly so. It was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen at a concert.

So amazing. So awesome. But I’m just a girl at the rock show.

What a Catch Donnie

I like most of Fall Out Boy’s video’s, sure, but I really love this one.

Fall Out Boy - What A Catch, Donnie from clandestine on Vimeo.

It’s a simple concept. It’s shot beautifully and elegantly. Alan Ferguson did an amazing, amazing job. I’ve always felt that this song was a eulogy for the band, the last death dirge as the ship sinks down and the band disappears. I didn’t like it much. But with the video, with Patrick Stump rescuing fans and band members and Panic! at the Disco from the disaster of Fall Out Boy, it is both touching and symbolic. I love the emotion in the beginning as well, the utter loneliness on the boat and a reprieve from a winged friend. When he releases the bird at the end a tiny portion of my heart just breaks. There was also an earlier version of the video with a really tragic green screen shot of Pete Wentz going down with the ship, where as here it’s just implied, but the sentiment is the same. I’m a little disturbed that people are partying over it, but I think it’s less death and more moving on. It’s a progression for the band, moving from one phase to another, and I like it. I really, really do. I’d recommend watching it in full screen. It’s worth it.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

WFNX Best Music Poll Concert

So many musical things have happened in the past few days that I’m breaking this weekend into three posts. Crazy!

WFNX asked their listeners to choose their favorite bands of the year, and put together a huge, free, outdoor concert at City Hall on August 1st with The Boston Phoenix. In my opinion, it was a pretty big success.

I made the venture in because I really wanted to see The Gaslight Anthem play. After a strange train ride into the city I met up with a friend at Quincy Market and we headed over to City Hall to watch the show. Before the bands began to play, the crowd was greeted by Patty. Patty was the event coordinator, I think, and was some employ of the city of Boston. She had three rules for us: no sticks or water bottles in the pit, no children under 14 in the pit, and no moshing in the wheelchair section. Because obviously, if you're going to mosh, it's going to be in the wheelchairs. She told us these rules about 6 or 7 times throughout the show, all while yelling at us to shut up and listen to her. Now, this may have been necessary if the crowd was angry or fighting or upset. But we weren’t. We were all either peacefully standing or sitting on the stairs, and yet she was treating us like misbehaving four year olds. “I have tattoos too,” she screamed at one point, “so I get you people!” Um, alright Patty. Sure. The crowd booed her and she deserved it because she was obnoxious. There was no reason to treat us like that.

Anyways, Ra Ra Riot was on first. They were really, really good. There was an electric cello and violin, guys rocking out on guitars, and a bouncy vocalist. The music was much prettier than I expected it to be as well. I like ‘Dying is Fine” a lot, and need to go out and buy their CD. I’d love to see them live again, somewhere with better acoustics than the side of City Hall, but the next time they’re playing in Boston (October 3rd) I have Red Sox tickets. Sad.

Next up (after Patty of course) was Passion Pit. I’ve heard so much about Passion Pit, seeing as they’re from Cambridge and created a huge buzz with their music last year. The beats are great, the music is great, and they sounded awesome. Until the vocalist started to sing. The music itself is electric, both in tonal quality and excitement factor, and it is fun and hip and fresh, but Michael Angelakos voice is very sharp and high, and I did not find it pleasant live. Listening to their songs on myspace, it’s not so bad and I like the music. It makes me wonder if either his voice just doesn’t hold up live, or if maybe the venue was having issues with the sound. There was evidence of the latter throughout the show, with microphones dropping out and barely audible singing at times, and performers having problems with the onstage monitors. I don’t know which caused the vocals to be off yesterday, but it wasn’t great. They were fun to watch, though, and had great energy onstage.

Metric was next, and they played an acoustic set, which I was a little disappointed by. I had really been looking forward to rocking out during their set, but everything was slowed down and mellow. However the reason for it was that one of the band members had just had a baby and couldn’t make it, which is a wonderful and joyous reason for an acoustic, so I wasn’t upset at all. It was pretty music, though the crowd wasn’t really feeling the slowed down pace and started to wander away. “Help, I’m Alive” was weird slow, but it was more meaningful without the electronic beats and fast pace.

Finally, The Gaslight Anthem. I was so excited to see them, so pumped. There were some technical glitches (damn you city of Boston and your lack of sound knowledge!) with Brian Fallon’s mic not being on at the beginning, and a strangely muddy sound quality through the first song, but they cleared up fast and it was amazing. I’ve always found them to be real and genuine people in the interviews they give, and they play the same way. Their hearts are on their sleeves and they pour their souls into the music. They also look like they’re having an awesome time. They played a 45 minute set and got through most of The ’59 Sound. Brian Fallon talked about how much he loved Boston, and the fact that maybe he was a little scared of us too, and that he doesn’t say that to just any city. There was East Coast love and rock music filled with soul. I did not want the set to end. They had fun, they related to the crowd, and they played some great, high powered, feel good music. What more could you ask for from a free concert?

I left at this point and ventured into the North End for dinner before I had to catch my train back home. I stumbled upon the St. Agrippina festival and bought delicious calzone and gelato from a street vendor while watching little kids play carnival games and run around in the flashing lights. I missed the last two bands, but wasn’t the least bit disappointed.

I've Got the Answer

So My Chemical Romance played two shows at the Roxy in LA on July 31 and August 1, at which they premiered three new songs. And someone put them online. Yay!

The one I was most excited to hear was “Death Before Disco.” Gerard had recently spoken at ComicCon that he felt this was their best song to date, possibly their “Born to Run.” I can’t pull out a ton of the lyrics, but it sounds like an MCR song that’s not about death! Yay! It’s very rock, and it’s fun, and there’s something about a party and a dance floor and getting your hands up and fists up and I love it! The guitars sound great and the back up vocals sound awesome and there is so much energy. I need new, good music and this looks like it. I want this in a professional recording, I need this soon. Watch this video, I command it. Also, Mikey’s t-shirt apparently reads “Mikey Fucking Way” in Japanese. More awesome. Watch the party break down tonight:

Next is “LA Heavy” or maybe “Kiss the Rain.” I’m not quite sure what the title is, but it sounds much more MCR than the last song. Again, the music sounds great. Very rock, maybe a touch of an 80s influence. Gerard screams and yells and this is like a comfort blanket of familiar for MCR kids. I like this as well.

Finally, “Drugs.” A very MCR title. Loud guitars. Drumbeats. It doesn’t light me on fire quite like the last two, but I’m still so pumped for their new CD. This is going to be very, very good. I want to be in that crowd so badly, feeling this music pulse though the room. They better tour soon. The scene needs to be reminded of what rock music is.

Weezer Party Vibe

Weezer just played in Korea with their new five-piece configuration. I’m still a little jarred by the fact that Weezer has five people, but it seems to be working with Pat Wilson moving up onto the guitar and Josh Freese handling the drumming. They played three new songs, though only two of them are really new – one, “Can’t Stop Partying,” was released by Rivers Cuomo on his Alone II album, but now it has the rest of the band playing as well.

“I’m Your Daddy” is my favorite of the three, though it’s hard to choose because they’re all good. They’re party songs, which sound a little silly coming from crazy, balding Rivers Cuomo, but I love Weezer for the fact that they’re still able to pull it off. They have a bit of a pop sound, while still keeping that alternative edge. I can see “I’m Your Daddy” playing on the radio.

Girl Got Hot” is also good. It’s a total sing along song, and the entire arena got into it even though it was a completely new song. It’s written from the perspective of a young guy, about a girl he knew in Junior High who… got hot. It’s a funny story telling song. Great for live shows.

Finally, “Can’t Stop Partying.” It was much more of an anti-party song on Alone II, with Rivers sounding sad on just an acoustic, as though try as he might he just couldn’t stop partying. With the rest of the band behind him, it now sounds like he’s enjoying the partying. They’ve also added backing vocals which sound a little put of place, but I like the song. It’s a jam for driving in the car with your friends and the windows down. I love Weezer’s versatility and lately they’re playing a very party mood. I’m a little worried they’re just rushing through the record to get through their contract with Geffen, but I’m not displeased with what they’re putting out. I guess it’s a win-win for everyone, as long as they tour in Boston soon. I'm also excited that they're working with Butch Walker, who seems to produce great music. We'll just have to wait and see what album seven is like!