SKIDMORE: Why? just rocks my world. I first heard this band while on tour in the U.K. and was actually embarrassed I hadn't heard of them already, since they're from my own hometown. I came home and MySpaced them my newfound love. Nice guys — they actually wrote me back!

My First Earthquake
Cool in the Cool Way

Catchy synth-pop by Carnegie Mellon grads.

MCCAULEY: The chorus is right ... this might be the least cool thing I've heard all year. But they're so stoked! This is what everyone's younger sibling's first band sounds like.

SKIDMORE: Songs about tea and socks and being uncool. I wish I could relate. The music is fun and danceable; I'd put it on a party mix for sure.

Train
Hey, Soul Sister

Insipid Top 40 rock with annoyingly memorable chorus.

SKIDMORE: Umm ... is Jason Mraz collecting royalties on this song?

MCCAULEY: I feel like there is a record executive in L.A. who would flip his shit over this song, give it to Taylor Swift, sell a million records, and then soundtrack an awful music video filled with slow-motion shots in the rain.

Pete Bernhard
Orphan

Devil Makes Three singer goes mellow, still ornery.

F.A.B.: They won me over with the harmonica. I love the groove on this.

SKIDMORE: Bob Dylan has sex with the Devil Makes Three. All three of them.

Los Cenzontles
Sueños

Mexican-American roots band collaborates with Taj Mahal and Los Lobos' David Hidalgo.

MCCAULEY: Blues rock? Is this a viable career choice still?

HOTTUB: If this were food, it would be carne asada rib pie dipped in white gravy with a side of refried greens. Yum-my!

Music Awards Feature

Music Awards intro by Jennifer Maerz

Music Awards: Lazer Sword by Shawn Reynaldo

Music Awards: Crown City Rockers by Ezra Gale

Music Awards sidebar: Should I Stay or Should I Go? by Ezra Gale, Jennifer Maerz and Shawn Reynaldo

Music Awards Program Guide

Music Awards intro by Jennifer Maerz

Music Awards program guide

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