This Emo Wednesday post will be a little on the short side. I’m writing this on my phone and from bed, exhausted on the second day of a four-day work week. But the show must go on, and it goes on with The All-American Rejects.

Did you know AAR was still around, touring, and released a dark, jaded three-song EP titled “Send Her To Heaven” in July? Me neither.

It’s a far, far cry from their self-titled debut album, whose songs were formulaic and some of the sugary sweetest pop punk/emo that ever existed. Case in point: the first song on the album, “My Paper Heart.”

It’s poppy, it’s catchy, and it barely qualifies as decent music as I listen now, but I listened to it religiously my senior year of high school. I was a teacher’s aide in an Algebra 2 class, and as I’d input grades via an iMac — you know, the bulky all-in-ones with the clear colored shell — I’d pop the album into the CD slot and listen as I worked.

In some ways I liked this song and the rest of the album the same way I liked the early pop Beatles albums, which is not to say AAR was anywhere close to The Beatles. It’s just that pop can be super catchy, especially when the lyrics are about moving on after a breakup with a slightly damaged heart. I felt it then, and I feel it now.

In any case, enjoy the saccharine melodies of early All-American Rejects, and hopefully this weekend I’ll get back on track with non-emo blog content.

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