‘Tis Easter Monday here, and who better to listen to than those marvellous chroniclers of modern American life – that heady mix of consumerism, beer, and latent Christianity – than The Hold Steady? With a new album “Heaven Is Whenever” coming out in early May, some early tracks have come leaking out of the Interwebs. My favourite so far is “Rock Problems”, with its superlative bar-room rock that The Hold Steady are experts in.
But one little worry about the new album is the news that marvellously mustacheod (sp?) keyboardist Franz Nicolay has done a runner. Which is a massive shame; his piano lines have often elevated their songs above the meat-and-two-veg rock that they could sometimes stumble into. Let’s see if that, over the course of a whole album, his departure makes a difference. I certainly hope not. Going to miss him though; he’s a great live presence and a thoroughly nice chap.
On a related note, isn’t May going to be a mental month for new releases from some great bands? The Hold Steady, The National and Broken Social Scene all have new records out. I believe the vernacular is “Woot”.