‘120 Minutes’ away from reality

You can just see it in his face: Matt Pinfield, left, loves music, and the sounds 
of Sleigh Bells, right. “120 Minutes” airs at midnight on Saturday on MTV2.

When Matt Pinfield first hosted the weekly alternative music roundup “120 Minutes” on MTV, the videos he played actually were an alternative to the mainstream music that dominated the network. That late-night dose of independent music on Sundays was, for many, the only chance to absorb such glorious weirdness.

That was more than 15 years ago, and now indie rock is everywhere. But when a revamped “120 Minutes” hits MTV2 this Saturday, it will be an alternative of another sort: Music videos on an MTV network again, as opposed to their usual reality programming.

Pinfield, who has always been known as much for his wealth of information  as he was for being, as he says, “a short, bald guy who doesn’t look like a model,” is quick to point out that the network has been running hip-hop vids on “Sucker Free Sundays.”

“I don’t think anybody over there ever didn’t want to keep playing music,” he says. “It was just the success of all those reality shows ended up taking over. But it is exciting to be in on the rebirth of music here.”

When discussing music, Pinfield speaks like he’s rushing to put his thoughts into words before a new thought occurs.

“I’ve always had ADD, that’s why music was the focus that reeled me in,” he says. “I think the rest of the world has caught up, because the way people digest music and information has changed quite a bit.”

The new show certainly is faster paced. Where the original program had a guest or two, “120” 2.0 is packed with artists big and small, from Kings of Leon and Foo Fighters to smaller acts that Pinfield hopes to introduce to wider audiences.

“It’s a party philosophy,” says Pinfield of his programming. “If you go to somebo-dy’s house for a party and you know one or two people, you’re going to hang out and they might introduce you to one or two others.”

For more music news visit Pat Healy’s Mixtape blog. Follow him on Twitter @metrousmusic


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