Boys And Girls In America Review

artist: The Hold Steady date: 08/08/2007 category: compact discs
The Hold Steady: Boys And Girls In America
Release Date: Oct 3, 2006
Label: Vagrant
Genres: Indie Rock
Number Of Tracks: 11
The reason this record is worth embracing and even celebrating is because it's an honest to God rock & roll album.
 Sound: 9
 Lyrics: 8
 Overall Impression: 10
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review (1) 3 comments vote for this album:
overall: 9
Boys And Girls In America Reviewed by: thereverendsoup, on august 08, 2007
2 of 2 people found this review helpful

Sound: This record is straight-up rock 'n' roll, evoking shadows of everything from Lynyrd Skynyrd (in a good way) to Bob Dylan, but with a distinct individual feel that ties it together. A piano adds welcome flourishes to pretty much all the songs, although it can be a bit too high up in the mix at times. Still, the fun the band was having making this record is almost tangible just by listening to it. // 9

Lyrics: The lyrics are mostly brilliant. They're written around stories of boys and girls in America, and the drugs they do, presented in a very "literary" fashion. You can tell these guys really, really love Kerouac (even going as far as to mention one of his "characters," the autobiographical Sal Paradise, in the opening line of the opening track). The singer himself is probably the part that'll make or break the band for a listener. His voice is kinda nasal and rambling, but not the least bit lacking in sincerity and passion. // 8

Overall Impression: I've been listening to this record almost nonstop since it came out last year. Seeing the band live only solidified its place among my favorite albums of the past couple years. The highlights (Stuck Between Stations, Chips Ahoy, First Night, You Can Make Him Like You, Citrus, Chillout Tent) are plenty, and the low points (Same Kooks) aren't really low, except by comparison to the best songs on the album. Stuck Between Stations starts the record off with a swift kick in the pants, and Southtown Girls is like a comedown from an epic high. Everything in between is well-paced and perfectly sequenced to the point that it makes listening all the way through almost a necessity. When it all comes down to it, at least one or two of these songs is about you. This record captures the feeling of youth as only a band that truly understands it could. // 10

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