At some point next year, Craig Finn, the splenetically wordy and generally joyous frontman of the Hold Steady, will release a solo album under his own name. Finn recorded it earlier this year in Austin, with Spoon collaborator Mike McCarthy producing and members of bands like Centro-matic, the Heartless Bastards, and Phosphorescent helping out. A couple of months ago, when I was still working at Pitchfork, I interviewed Finn about the album, and he used the word “Americana” to describe it.
On 11/25, Black Friday, Finn will participate in the whole Record Store Day thing by releasing a 7″ single with two of those solo songs, “Honolulu Blues” and “Rented Room,” and both of them are streaming below. “Honolulu Blues” is a lazy midtempo chug, and “Rented Room” is a relatively subdued Southern-rock reverie. In both cases, it’s fun to hear Finn’s voice and words removed from their usual blustery Hold Steady context. Listen below.
Between this and the new Mountain Goats track, it would probably behoove you to spend some time this morning thinking about song lyrics.