Album review: Craig Finn, “We All Want The Same Things”

by Jon E. Lynch

Craig Finn, “We All Want The Same Things”

Available: Friday, March 24, via Partisan Records in a wide variety of formats: digital download accompanied with the bonus Calvary Court EP and a number of bundles that include compact disc, a flexi disc of single “Preludes,” and vinyl versions, along with extraneous offerings such as a coffee mug, knit beanie, test pressings and hand-written lyric sheets.

“We All Want The Same Things” is the third proper solo record from the lead singer of the Minneapolis-via-Brooklyn rock ’n’ roll outfit, The Hold Steady. Still present are the hooks and choruses, along with Finn’s unique delivery and wry approach to lyrics. The album was largely recorded in Rhinebeck, New York, with “frequent collaborator Josh Kaufman producing and Dan Goodwin engineering and mixing, the record also features contributions from drummer Joe Russo, keyboardist Sam Kassirer, Rainer Maria vocalist Caithlin De Marrais, singer/songwriter Annie Nero, horn master Stuart Bogie, Jon Shaw, Jordan McLean, Matt Barrick and Finn’s longtime partner in The Hold Steady, guitarist Tad Kubler.” Stylistically, the songs on this latest album fit right alongside Finn’s work with The Hold Steady and those on the previous two solo outings. The sing-talk delivery and vivid imagery that established fans are used to are still very much present, if not darker and heavier themed here. As a casual fan of The Hold Steady, I’ve found the songs, characters, and stories on “We All Want The Same Things” worth revisiting. Above all else, Finn can certainly turn a phrase.

Recommended for fans of The Hold Steady, Lifter Puller, Bruce Springsteen, The Replacements, Future Islands, or Jets to Brazil.

Jon E. Lynch[email protected]


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