Boys And Girls In America - The Hold Steady
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Universal acclaim - based on 36 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 103 Ratings

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  • Summary: The Brooklyn-based rockers move to emo label Vagrant for this John Agnello-produced release.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 36
  2. Negative: 1 out of 36
  1. 100
    Finn’s writing is sharper than ever, the various narratives driven less by the wordy exposition of yore than acute observation, devastating detail, by turns exclamatory, epigrammatic and grainily authentic.
  2. [Finn] not only has a commanding, rousing voice but he also says something worth hearing, displaying gifts for both scope and depth that are all too rare in contemporary rock-- indie or mainstream.
  3. Not since Springsteen's "Greetings From Ashbury Park, NJ" has an album carved poetry so successfully from the dirty streets of America's greatest cities, or has a lyricist dealt so skilfully with the themes of addiction, failure and snatching redemption a split second before passing out.
  4. Boys in Girls in America is one gargantuan anthem short of, and two bits of filler long on, the band’s Born to Run.
  5. This is far from an album that will appeal to all, but it's a hell of a lot more fun than the Hold Steady's previous two efforts.
  6. THS’s move toward a purer aping of classic rock is mostly welcome and largely successful; the fallout is the loss of the band’s snaky, blunt riffing, their wit dissipating into a pool of honest rocking.
  7. Though loquacious, 'Boys and Girls in America' is a record full of maddening stream of consciousness lyrics that amble without direction, and narratives with no real stories or purpose.

See all 36 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 64 out of 71
  2. Negative: 4 out of 71
  1. Brian
    Feb 26, 2008
    Unbelievable album, such a fun album to listen to. Finn just seems like a likable character with these stories.
  2. DavidD
    Oct 30, 2006
    A masterpiece...never have i heard an album that showcases the beauty of youth so well. The album is about being young and having the whole world in front of you. Its also about living as though you never knew you did. Expand
  3. AnthonyO
    Jan 8, 2007
    If you don't like this album, you're not very smart.
  4. SinclairS
    Oct 6, 2006
    more pure genius from the Hold Steady. One of the top 10 albums this year
  5. BrianC
    Dec 3, 2006
  6. GuyH
    Jan 10, 2007
    Funny how the same criticism keeps coming up over and over again - they are a poor 'bar band'. Err, what? They are a rock band who play more up- tempo stuff so apparently this makes them a bar band - this is very lazy genre pigeon-holing - the sort of stuff we hate to read so please try to avoid this... The album is great although I suspect the vocals will turn a lot of people off. Think of the lead singer from the band Soul Coughing rocking out and you are pretty much there. Finn's lyrics are top notch, amusing and poignant, but if you can't identify with the chracters in his songs they will probably leave you cold. Which is fair enough. Expand
  7. RobH
    Oct 5, 2006
    An overhyped album if I've ever heard one. The Hold Steady continue to put out bland bar rock whose lyrics are their only saving grace. Unfortunately for them, the lyrics on this album pale in comparison to their previous two efforts. And don't tell me I must see them live. I have. And I still wasn't blown over. Expand

See all 71 User Reviews