Tuesday, May 27, 2008

The Hold Steady....Not For Me

So I once had a friend that would endorse this band and their past album "Boys And Girls In America", so I finally got the interest to listen to that album once I downloaded their new album. BUT.....I thought it sucked, pretty basic generic "riffs" and pretty general "frat rock" lyrics complete with exaggerated drunk stories. The Hold Steady seem to go wrong with every angle they choose to take (which is the only thing they accomplish), the whole "we did or do a lot of drugs and drink" - the replacements did it better. The basic "high school band guitar distortion effect" - Green Day did it better (and i don't even like them either). Another big thing this band is known for is their on-stage antics, "Oh man, this band rules, they get wasted as they play." - well sure I'll grant you that makes for an occasional great show, and many bands have done it well (The National, The Replacements, Pavement). But the difference is they made good music, and they were more than a silly gimmick.

12 comments:

Stephen said...

man, i was all excited that you had a leak of their new record. i love the hold steady. sorry it wasnt for you.

Dusty Wilmes said...

I was also unable to like this band, though I didn't try very hard. The few songs I listened to, the photos I saw, the names of their songs-- in short their whole persona turned me off.

Blackberry White said...

Meh, for some reason "Separation Sunday" never gets the love it deserves. I'd say I'm a huge fan of the band, but they're kind of losing me with the new album and the previous one.....like you said, it's getting generic. Don't wanna beat a dead horse, but I'd give "Separation Sunday" a listen, it's a lot more complex than their recent stuff.

Blogger said...

Be careful man. The Hold Steady are a band that takes many, many repeated listens to appreciate. They're one of those bands that "grow on you." So just be wary that you won't eat your words in a few weeks, months or even years.

They are a really great band and they took me three long years (since Separation Sunday) to love them. But either way, like any other regarded act, they require second, third, etc. chances. Don't give up!

Anonymous said...

i'm one of those people that love the hold steady and the stories they tell. i was a big fan of lifter puller as well though, so the way craig finn writes has been with me for a while now.

otter said...

"The Hold Steady are a band that takes many, many repeated listens to appreciate."

-where i come from that means it sucks. if i have to be beaten into submission by a band, well, i don't have time for that.

the hold steady have to be the worst band of the 2000's who get constant praise from fanboys, blogs and whatever. they suck

Blogger said...

(otter said...
"The Hold Steady are a band that takes many, many repeated listens to appreciate."

-where i come from that means it sucks. if i have to be beaten into submission by a band, well, i don't have time for that.)

Well, I don't know where you come from but that doesn't mean they "suck." It's a well-known fact that some bands and artists take many times before loving. Some get them on the first try but others don't. And if you don't go back and give them extra chances then you will never know what you missed out on.

Plus, a lot of music that you instantly love doesn't age well. I'm sure many people can't stand Vampire Weekend anymore but loved it at first.

Anyways, whereever you come from, slow down and really enjoy the music.

Bedazzler said...

You're obviously not from the Midwest...because all of those stories are true - It's not an act. I think they're great, but they haven't really done much different. There first two sound more fresh than the last two. It's almost as if they are getting tired of it too...or maybe the sparser production on the first two give them more of an edge. Still - Count me in with them.

Dusty Wilmes said...

Actually, me and Zak are both dazzling products of Ohio: The Heart of It All.

Anonymous said...

frat rock is right, not great riffs, but for poetry in motion craig finn is the best around...

Anonymous said...

Boys and Girls in America sucked, and it is unfortunate that that is where your introduction started.

However, the first song off the first album is amazing, and the album is good.

The second album, Separation Sunday, is great.

I also loved parts of Stay Positive, including the title track.

I highly recommend checking out Craig Finn's first band, Lifter Puller. He wasn't obsessed with Springsteen at all at that point.

Great site, thanks.

Chris Earley
Oakland, CA

tenley said...

You're my new favorite person.