The Songs We Can't Escape

3 DOORS DOWN
"Let Me Be Myself"

Yeah, I thought this was Rob Thomas's latest self-pity party, too. We weren't too far off base there, were we? Geico should really just hire actors to dress like cavemen, loiter at concerts and dance clubs wearing Geico-emblazoned gear, and casually work Geico into conversations. Given the ubiquity of DVR technology, it's the next logical step.

3 Doors Down
Autumn de Wilde
3 Doors Down

50 CENT
"Get the Message"
Free internet mixtape

War Angel LP represents the first salvo in Fitty's comeback charm offensive, his attempt to win back fans after a couple of years of uninspired half-assery and drum up interest in the oft-delayed Before I Self Destruct. So we get relatively inspired Curtises—moneyed rake Curtis; brute jokester Curtis; bloodthirsty, streetwise Curtis—spitting over soul/blaxploitation beats. Lightweight fare like sub-"Girls, Girls, Girls" takeoff "London Girl" charms, but battlefield bangers à la "Message," where 50 inexplicably quotes Jack Nicholson in Batman, are the real treats.

MARIAH CAREY
"Obsessed"

"You a mom and pop, I'm a corporation/I'm the red carpet, you're a conversation"? Ouch. Mimi sons Eminem, flouts better battle rhymes in a single song than Shady could on Relapse, is suddenly even more awesome.

CHOIR OF YOUNG BELIEVERS
"Action/Reaction"

Finger-rapped bongo ripples, slo-mo drums, a skyscraper-high wave of Codeine: the perfect prescription for a deleted The Informers scene wherein Caribou's Daniel Snaith, improbably cast as a bartender, serves tropical drinks to tanned, bejeweled teen scions.

THE FIERY FURNACES
"The End Is Near"

Universality from Eleanor and Matt? A nice surprise, this willingness to toss us a subdued, maudlin bone not (apparently) interwoven into some bonkers overarching conceit: "Near" merely sets its fearful eyes on some boom as it's being lowered. Everybody's been there.

 
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