Chris Fantini

Saturdays 1-5PM


March 16, 2004
Frenchkiss Records
Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock, Hard Rock

Album Review

"The '80s almost killed me," admits the Hold Steady's Craig Finn on "Positive Jam," one of ten rock & roll confessionals on the band's debut. That sets the tone for the rest of Almost Killed Me, as Finn reveals a lifestyle that included a "skater phase," a "raver phase," and a "razor blade phase." His lamentations are the appropriate voice for the band's debut, which sets out to recapture the glory of classic American rock and early indie rock. With rugged guitar riffs and solos and Finn's half-sung, scratchy voice, the Hold Steady mostly succeed, easily recalling the classic rock of early Bruce Springsteen or the sincerity of latter-day Hüsker Dü. When he's not remembering the parties and acting like "a Twin Cities trash bin," he reacts to the corruption of today's youth. Finn may seem like a fish out of water at this point, but having survived a self-indulgent life, his lyrics, as well as the Hold Steady's back-to-basics rock, are ironically welcoming.
Kenyon Hopkin, Rovi

Track Listing

  1. Positive Jam
  2. The Swish
  3. Barfruit Blues
  4. Most People Are DJs
  5. Certain Songs
  6. Knuckles
  7. Hostile, Mass.
  8. Sketchy Metal
  9. Sweet Payne
  10. Killer Parties
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