Thursday, July 17, 2008
quickie album review: stay positive
Admittedly, I had never even heard of The Hold Steady until their near-perfect third album Boys and Girls in America, but I've been firmly on their bandwagon ever since.  Thus, Stay Positive has been one of my more anticipated album releases of the year, and though it doesn't quite reach the peaks of "Boys and Girls", it's certainly no slouch either.  To be completely honest, "Sequestered in Memphis" - the first single to hit the radio waves - had me nervous.  It's a tight little song for sure, however it sounded a bit too similar to their previous work; like they were just rehashing more of the same.  Fortunately, my fears turned out to be unfounded, as Stay Positive does break new ground with their instrumentation (banjos and harpsichords and theremins - oh my!) while still maintaining their penchant for lyrical storytelling and staying true to their Springsteen-esque rock roots.  Though not my favorite from them, Stay Positive is a solid addition to their discography. How appropriate that it opens with "Constructive Summer", since it's a perfect summer rock album.  I can't wait to hear it live.

Favorite Track: "One for the Cutters"

(A quick postscript: Trust that I have no intention of making album reviews a weekly "thing," however in honor of the fact that a) this is a fairly notable release and b) I'm seeing these guys live for the first time tomorrow, I figured a review was in order.  I'll get back to mocking the trivial details of my everyday life soon enough, but for today, music. Hope ya'll don't mind too terribly much.)

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