August 18, 2011 | 11:59am
Wow, I haven't heard the name Gym Class Heroes in a while! I remember the group, though. They were a hip-hop-and-pop-punk hybrid band that sounded tailor-made for the kids that got their music cues solely from MTV2.
Then the band's emcee, Travie McCoy, went off and did a solo thing, releasing the problematic "Billionaire" and even appearing as a guest on Taio Cruz's similarly problematic "Higher."
But, hey, now the whole band has returned! And with an adult-contemporary style!
And, basically, they're more stale and conventional than when they started! Check out their latest single, "Stereo Hearts." Let's face it: You can't get more adult-contemporary than putting Maroon 5 singer and The Voice judge Adam Levine into the mix.
Anyway, the song's main theme is the often-used love/music figure of speech. Travie's lines consist of plugging in retro music media and players like tapes, records and boom boxes. A few lines seem to work against the purpose. He compares himself to a boom box -- "all I ask is you not get mad at me/when you have to purchase mad D batteries" -- but makes himself sound like a high-maintenance dude in the process.
Along with Levine's exaggerated pronunciation of the "Oh!" sound, the chorus also plays loose with human anatomy with the heart/stereo metaphor. Here's some education: The heart actually has four chambers, two atria and two ventricles. As a result, it's more like a 4.0 system than your usual 2.0 stereo system. I guess these guys weren't health class heroes. The heart/bass drum simile in Nicki Minaj's "Super Bass" made a lot more sense
Finally, as if mercifully, a line near the end of the song -- "because good music can be so hard to find" -- breaks the flimsy love/music metaphor this song is based upon.
Has Travie surfed the net lately? Good music is actually pretty easy to find if you know what you want and where to look. It's way easier than finding love.
But I'm not a famous solo artist back with my old, famous band once again and, hey, Adam Levine, to boot. So maybe I just don't know about hardship.
Unless maybe Travie is just pulling the wool over our eyes. Maybe he's really just laughing at all of us, knowingly acknowledging that, for him -- a super-famous dude -- love is really easy to find.
Either way, this track needs to go in for an angioplasty. STAT.