“Thanks for listenin', thanks for understandin'/Can't you see I'm feeling so abandoned,” sings Craig Finn on the newly-released single from the Hold Steady, “Entitlement Crew” b/w “Snake in the Shower.”
Recorded this November in Brooklyn, NY, with producer Josh Kaufman, it's the first new music from the band in nearly four years, and the first studio recording to feature longtime keyboard player Franz Nicolay since 2008's Stay Positive
The Hold Steady exemplify strong Memphis-New York bonds that have connected the two burgs for some time, from Alex Chilton's “Bangkok” single to Jake Rabinbach's Brooklyn Hustle/Memphis Muscle
, not to mention numerous creatives who continue to tack back and forth, such as guitarist Jake Vest, singer/songwriter Valerie June, and erstwhile Memphis Flyer
contributor Eileen Townsend. In the case of the Hold Steady, guitar wunderkind (wunderdad?) Steve Selvidge is the Memphis linchpin, bringing his relish of solid riffage and his trademark venturesome leads to the band. Having joined six years ago, Selvidge has become an essential element of the Hold Steady's sound. Ostensibly brought in to fill the slot Nicolay vacated, Selvidge is clearly not going anywhere even with Nicolay back in the fold.
Though not officially released until tomorrow, the single is already available exclusively to members of the official Hold Steady fan community, The Unified Scene
. Members who wish to download the single can do so by donating to The K+L Guardian Foundation, a fund set up to benefit the children of Unified Scene founder Mike Van Jura, who died in November 2012.
The single's release also corresponds with the band's four night residence at The Brooklyn Bowl, which kicked off last night. Dubbed “Massive Nights,” all four shows quickly sold out, a promising sign that we will continue to hear the Hold Steady, graced with Selvidge's talents, for some time to come.
The Hold Steady's "Massive Nights" at the Brooklyn Bowl, Nov. 29, 2017