A good (but sleazy) way to hit on a waiter

So if you’re ordering breakfast at a diner or somewhere, and you notice your waiter is hot, here’s a good way to let him know how you feel.

Waiter: How do you like your eggs?

You: Inseminated.  (Wink)

I guarantee you’ll get a little something extra with your breakfast.  Wait, maybe that’s not a good thing.

Vampire Weekend / Beat The Devil

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It felt a bit insane to walk into the Bowery Ballroom last night and remind oneself that this sold-out show would feature a band who’ve just barely put out an album. Vampire Weekend have earned seemingly endless waves of attention for their hot sound, and now at this, their official record release event, it was clear that those in attendance were eager to continue this admiration as if the band had been in their living rooms for years.

Feeding off this energy, openers Beat the Devil prepared the crowd with their fervent soul-rock that demanded the room’s attention. Their set began with singer Shilpa Ray wailing proudly into the mic and banging on a comically oversized metal shovel. Out of nowhere, bassist Mishka Shubaly began beating a bass drum from somewhere in the back of the room. As he waded through the crowd to eventually join his bandmates onstage, Ray’s stunning alto moan made clear the fact that it would be the star of the show. Her old-timey, jazzy vocals commanded attention in their strength and tone, as all the while she rocked the harmonium with an energy I’ve not seen matched. Bassist and drummer accompanied her gorgeously though intense rock-out sessions augmented by erratic dancing. Beat the Devil won many new fans this evening, myself definitely included.

All this as if we weren’t excited enough for the main event Vampire Weekend, nerd rockers for whom being in a band began as an after school activity (because Columbia students have so much free time). So while the rest of us are thinking about finally taking the leap and enrolling in a two-year-college, these kids pack Ivy League cred and the goods to be in an awesome rock band. The NYC boys were glad to be back in town – and at their favorite venue – after touring and promoting for their finally released self-titled debut. As they played their songs to a crowd that echoed back in sing-along, it became clear that the beef of their preppy African ska is provided by Ezra Koenig’s picking guitar style and Rostam Batmanglij’s keyboards. Their distinctive blend of stylistic influences, rather than sheer talent or elaborate solos, are what make these guys stand out among the masses. I’m very curious indeed to see how they might take these elements and extend them into future albums. But for now, they’ve certainly earned themselves a place among buzzworthy new bands, as evidenced by Koenig’s tale of having played before Paris Hilton earlier that day. “She’s got her own hit single, ‘Stars Are Blind,’ check it out.” If the world’s favorite celebutante can take time out of her busy schedule to see them, then we know this group is truly something. And remember, they’re totally not a goth band.

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