Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Hold Steady

I can never quite put my finger on why Springsteen doesn't butter my muffin. It's a case of 'So near yet so far' for me. I love recordings of his live shows although I have never experienced one myself (note to self, put on list of things to do before death). I love the musicians he hangs around with. They're the best. One of Little Steven's solo albums is amongst my favourite music of all time.

Yesterday in Zavvi (a shop formerly known as Virgin), avoiding a good friend's prods and pokes to buy the new Springsteen album, I picked up the Hold Steady's Boys and Girls in America CD. I have to confess this was on the basis of reviews but when Q and the Guardian agree I am normally convinced.

So now I am real disappointed that I have to go to work rather than spend all day learning the lyrics, playing along and pretending I discovered them.

'She was a really cool kisser and she wasn't all that strict of a Christian
She was a damned good dancer but she wasn't all that great of a girlfriend'

My God I'm 15 again. Anyone for a kickabout?


Tom Allen said...

Know exactly what you mean - think he tries too hard at being the average American guy - but the new album has crossed that void of scepticism for me - its a cracker with the band in fine form

andrew said...

Springsteen is the only artist I've travelled abroad to see play (and then seen again when he's come to the UK on the same tour). He's *immense* live. If you can get past the average American guy persona, which I actually think isn't that much in evidence anyway, then I think he's just about the best there is. While Magic is good, it pales in comparison with his 70s albums. I feel a mix-tape coming on. ha ha ha.

As for The Hold Steady, I liked Boys and Girls, but didn't love it - apart from the killer Stuck Between Stations, it lacked memorable songs. A far better (imho) and much less-hyped band who cover very similar territory are Marah - on tour over here at the moment!

Just my two-pennorth.


Matt Wilson said...

have to say i'm just to young to get into the boss

but the hold steady
sprung across them on the old tinternet last year and have been very impressed ever since
stuck between stations is great but the album does have other great songs on it
i don't remember anyof them cos i don't have a track listing or a CD copy

plus their older albums are killer two

without really being into the boss any anything other than the neccassariy dylan apprecatition they seem to have that sort of americana flavour to their punk rock sound