Tuesday, January 10, 2006

The way the whispers bit like fangs in the last hour of the parties. Lord to be 33 forever.

Over New Years we were talking to one of our Minneapolis associates, who mentioned that people are constantly asking her if she is the inspiration for Holly (aka Halleluiah), the main protagonist of the Hold Steady's Seperation Sunday. Her perfect answer to that fully-loaded question is, of course, that we are all Holly, and that is the gift of Seperation Sunday.

Some records are about difference. We can play faster than you. We can play louder than you. We can wear carpet samples and jump off our amps and be dirtier in our tour van. We can do the Hall & Oates groupie jizz spray routine in every Motel 6 from St. Paul to Carbondale more than you can. We have a Windam Hill fetish and a big ol' bag of stinky weed and feel free to eat some choad while we noodle. This is not one of those records. This is some shared human experience shit. We are all addicted to something. Our cell phones. Watching the West Wing on A&E while we eat bon-bons and lust after Rob Lowe's magic wand. Booze. Butt-fucking strangers.

We all ache to be loved, when we are loveless. We have all fooled around with sketchballs like Charlemagne at 5 AM and out of desperation messed around with your little hoodrat friend. We have all put people through the ringer in a needless and wasteful fashion that has our karma riding the mystery train deep south. We have done our best to keep the cheap brutalizations at bay, but they come down the pipe, right over the heart of the plate, so sweet and there and true, and we have swung away every time. We have truly taken our cuts.

But we are not just another burn in the carpet at the Thunderbird, another cowboy who has been fenced in. No, we can breathe. We can feel the glory of the other side of hard days gone by. We can be redeemed and released, our hearts newborn. And that type of gift doesn't come just by ripping off Thin Lizzy and the Boss, Nelson Algren and William Butler Yeats.

Not to be all rock critic with our album of the year, but there it is. We knew you were curious.

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1 comment:

Jennifer Waronker said...


"Banging Camp" was on the short list as a selection for 'Indie Rock Tuesday' at Stripper Power.