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THE HOLD STEADY Boys And Girls In America
Vagrant (2007)

The band's debut album received rave reviews in the US and after hearing this album you can see why. The nest way to describe it would be Jellyfish jamming with AC/DC and Bruce Springsteen on vocals! Take ‘Stuck Between Stations' where vocalist Craig Finn sounds uncannily like Springsteen. ‘Chips Away' features some neat organ riffs and hints at Green On Red. You can even hear shades of Phil Lynott on ‘Hot Soft Light', complete with Thin Lizzy style riffing.

This band are no mere copyists but revel in good musical taste and influences. You even get a bit of laid back West coast music with ‘First Night', whilst ‘Chillout Tent' adds all sort of musical wonders. ‘Southtown Girls' again brings to mind Thin Lizzy with its melodic twin lead guitar, making a fitting finale to a very enjoyable album.

For music fans who like a mixed bag this album pushes all the right buttons. It takes a few plays to stick but it is well worth it and already 2007 is starting off very strongly musically.


Review by Jason Ritchie

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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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