The Hold Steady released two new songs to their Bandcamp. First, “The Stove and the Toaster” is a stomping rocker punctuated with piles of guitar licks, a piano interlude and brass. Singer Craig Finn narrates a story about all sorts of nefarious characters and revenge plots.
During the chorus he sneers, “Got some new information from the chef and the chauffeur/ They put the stash in the stove, they keep the cash in the toaster/ Down in Las Cruces they don’t play with jokers/ I hope I still know you when this is all over.”
The other new track, “Star 18,” boasts a similar ragged edge, though on this song an organ flits beneath the drums and guitar. Finn muses on the music industry, celebrity and rock and roll posturing, tossing off sharp one-liners like, “Sorry I’m late, I got caught in the mosh/ With this dude who said he used to play with Peter Tosh/ But he never brought it up again once I said, ‘Man I don’t believe you.'”
The Hold Steady recorded “The Stove and the Toaster” and “Star 18” in May at Isokon Studios with producer Josh Kaufman. The tracks are available on Bandcamp, but will hit all digital streaming services July 20th. For every Bandcamp download, the Hold Steady will donate the proceeds to the K+L Guradian Foundation, which benefits the family of the late “Jersey” Mike Van Jura, a Pennsylvania rock scene mainstay and prominent Hold Steady supporter.
Along with “The Stove and the Toaster” and “Star 18,” the Hold Steady have released to other song pairings in recent months. Last November, they shared “Entitlement Crew” and “A Snake In the Shower,” while in March they offered up “Eureka” and “Esther.” The band’s most recent album, Teeth Dreams, arrived in 2014.
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The Hold Steady will embark on a North American tour July 25th at the White Eagle Hall in Jersey City, New Jersey. On October 2nd, Finn and the Gaslight Anthem’s Brian Fallon will launch a co-headlining tour in Boston, Massachusetts.