The Songs We Can't Escape

FALL OUT BOY feat. TRAVIS FROM GYM CLASS HEROES
"Catch Me If You Can/Proclamation of Emaciation (demo)"

More exceedingly winky corporate emo about being totally fucking famous—if not about what it's like to be riding Ashlee Simpson on the regular.

NISENNENMONDAI
"Pop Group"

Vivian Girls
courtesy of the artists
Vivian Girls

Weirdly, this song's most cathartic moments come when this trio of Japanese ladies seem to recoil—for just an instant at a time—from their driving no-fi clang, as if leaning back in unison.

POP LEVI
"Mai's Space"

This addictive synth-cheese wonder would easily fit on a late-'80s FM playlist between Taco's "Puttin' on the Ritz" and Duran Duran's "The Reflex" (with dinkier production) or on Ween's White Pepper (with more obvious perversion) or on a Weird Al C-sides collection (with less "meaningful" lyricism). Versatile!

ROBIN THICKE
"Magic"

In addition to being the son of a mid-level TV star and an R&B sensation in his own right, Thicke, it seems, is also a magician who can "make the pain disappear" and "erase the past." If you're buying that, he's also got a Jimmy Hoffa gravesite he'd like to sell you.

VIVIAN GIRLS
"No"

My son's closing in on age two, and for the past several weeks, "no"—declarative, insistent—has been his favorite verbal utterance. Thing is, I prefer how Brooklyn, NYC's Vivian Girls say it a whole lot better: a whole long link-sausage string of the rejecting word as nonchalant as the accompanying ripped-Converse punk guitar scum.

 
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