When Craig Finn announced he was working on a solo album, more than a few people worried what that might mean for the future of The Hold Steady.
As it turns out, Finn’s Clear Heart Full Eyes — released this past January — was a chance for him to recharge; to turn down the amps and eschew The Hold Steady’s beers-in-the-air rock anthems in order to explore the quieter side of his songwriting. That opportunity, coupled with a 40th birthday, got Finn thinking about adulthood — and, subsequently, the next Hold Steady album. (Let’s just say it’ll be less about the boys and girls in America and more about the men and women.)
Uptown caught up with the revered singer/songwriter to talk more about the band’s forthcoming sixth record, his solo outing and why there’s room in rock ’n’ roll for grown-ups.
Uptown: I know you’re working on the next Hold Steady record now. Can you give me a status update?
Craig Finn: We’re 65% of the way there. We’re continuing to write more songs. We’re going to start recording this summer and finish it in the fall. We’ll definitely play new songs on the road. It helps us see where we’re at. A song might sound great in rehearsal, but then you get onstage and you realize that second chorus goes on too long……