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A Youthful Misstep, Chronicled in Song

Bishop Allen knows how to make fun of its members' youthful neuroses.
Bishop Allen knows how to make fun of its members' youthful neuroses.

Bishop Allen has mastered the art of quirky, unassuming pop with a fragile heart. The band's heartfelt, refreshing music is imbued with smart choruses and jangly guitars, and "Central Booking" exemplifies its charming, relatable songwriting.

A humorous confession of an embarrassing Sunday-evening mistake, "Central Booking" describes a cowardly encounter with a police officer as the narrator finds himself in handcuffs, blubbering. Trapped among teenage rebels and street-corner misfits, he's stuck repeating, "I don't belong." But he faces a night in jail, with all the attendant indignities of incarceration: "I'm not a threat / No, not like that," he pleads when his shoes and shoelaces are confiscated.

Bishop Allen is in the process of self-releasing one four-song EP for every month in 2006, and each dispenses an abundance of hooky, piano-driven sing-along fodder. "Central Booking," from February, finds the band acknowledging its youthful neuroses with a knowing look and a sly smile.

Listen to yesterday's 'Song of the Day.'

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Kathryn Yu
By day, Kathryn Yu is an Interaction Designer working for a marketing firm in New York City, toiling away at Web sites. By night, she's a freelance photographer and live-music addict. Her photography has appeared in publications like Pitchfork,, Thrillist, Gothamist, and more. She often forgets to blog at, and is also making a movie.