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Craig Finn – Cleart Heart Full Eyes

February 2, 2012

I was crazy about The Hold Steady’s Separation Sunday.  Although I have purchased every subsequent album, none of those hit me like that first blast.  They all seemed like variations on a similar theme – not necessarily a bad thing, but none of them grabbed me by the balls like Separation Sunday.

A few weeks ago I heard “Honolulu Blues” the single off of the new Craig Finn solo LP.  Wow – this was something a bit different.  I began anticipating the full length.  I have had several listens now and I really like it.  The music is just different enough from The Hold Steady to feel like something new, but familiar.

It is slowed down and twangy at times.  Finn’s vocals are more intimate and relaxed.  The lyrics are at times more cryptic than the typical The Hold Steady lyrics.  The narratives are bit more obscure.  But I kind of like that – it makes me wonder – it is not so much like watching a movie. I am a sucker for the local Minnesota references.

Overall – music and lyrics – are more atmospheric and a more mature to me than The Hold Steady.  That is a good thing for me.  Highly recommended. I will be reserving a spot on my “Best of 2012” for this early year release.


From → Music Reviews

  1. Just popped over and listened to ‘Honolulu Blues’. Yup, I like it a lot. Put this guy on the list.

    • He is a local boy too (Minneapolis)

      • How many great bands and musicians come from that state? Off the top of my head Greg Brown (I think), The Replacements, Husker Du.

      • Don’t forget the minor stars: Dylan and Prince

      • Bobby is always worth it. I’ve read some of your takes about his newer material. I couldn’t agree more. I love it. I might have mentioned this before but I seen Bob Mould on Austin City a couple years ago. Fantastic! Didn’t Jeff Tweedy have a connection there also? Anyways lots of very cool music.

      • Tweedy is a Chicago guy, but has a bunch of Minneapolis buddies in a band called Golden Smog

      • OK. I have a couple CD’s by Smog. like all those connected bands

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