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Stay Positive Extra tracks

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Audio CD, Extra tracks, July 15, 2008
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Amazon's The Hold Steady Store


Image of album by The Hold Steady


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I Hope This Whole Thing Didn't Frigten You audio video


Things to know about The Hold Steady:

• Teeth Dreams is the sixth album from one of America's most acclaimed rock bands.

• This is their first release in four years. Their last, Heaven is Whenever, came out in May 2010.

• The songs on Teeth Dreams came together over the past three years. Many of them went through significant changes along the way. Four ... Read more in Amazon's The Hold Steady Store

Visit Amazon's The Hold Steady Store
for 10 albums, 5 photos, videos, and 5 full streaming songs.

Frequently Bought Together

Stay Positive + Boys and Girls in America + Separation Sunday
Price for all three: $29.97

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (July 15, 2008)
  • Original Release Date: 2008
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks
  • Label: Vagrant Records
  • ASIN: B0019T9F9S
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #243,442 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Constructive Summer
2. Sequestered in Memphis
3. One for the Cutters
4. Navy Sheets
5. Lord, I m Discouraged
6. Yeah Sapphire
7. Both Crosses
8. Stay Positive
9. Magazines
10. Joke About Jamaica
11. Slapped Actress

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Limited edition packaging (50,000) includes 3 bonus tracks:

Bonus Tracks
1.Ask Her for Adderall
2.Cheyenne Sunrise
3. Two Handed Handshake

The Hold Steady's ascent and eventual breakthrough with 2006's Boys & Girls in America was never pre-ordained. If anything they did it without the tastemakers' consent. Their shtick is old-fashioned through and through, beginning with Thin Lizzy and ending with Bruce Springsteen, performed by men advanced enough to have experienced those touchstones first or second hand. And look at them--not exactly The Strokes, are they? But it was precisely their enthusiastic unoriginality, the fact that the clichés were piled on so thick and so fast, that they triumphed. And placed next to that unapologetically feel good record, that Stay Positive sounds so immediately brighter and more muscular is undoubtedly a great sign. Production is really cranked up--see the horns wedged into "Sequestered in Memphis", the REM mandolin texturing of "Both Crosses" and the surprising harpsichord flagrancy of "One for the Cutters". They're clearly determined to not be so easily pegged this time around, though admittedly they never exactly go that far off-piste. "Our songs are sing-along songs," announced Craig Finn semi-helpfully, and though the spirit is right, with such a conversational lyrical style that is rarely the case. It's more about the rock gestures and knowing when to punch the air. And there are instances aplenty, from the Pete Townsend-esque windmill power-chords in "Constructive Summer", to the overblown solo in "Lord I'm Discouraged" that is so "November Rain" it's practically going through Stephanie Seymour's trash (those not watching MTV in the mid-90s, hit Youtube). --James Berry

Customer Reviews

The album certainly has a lot of redeeming moments, but overall it doesn't quite cut it.
Nathan E. Reticker-Flynn
Either way, it's easy enough to listen to, as the Hold Steady (God, what a terrible name) have proved themselves to be a band that anyone can enjoy.
S. D. Mason
Stay Positive could be The Hold Steady's masterpiece, but somehow I think that album is still to come.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Wayne H on July 18, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
News of the new Hold Steady album raised a lot of questions. Could it possibly live up to the escalating expectations their first three albums produced? Will the familiar characters of the past be back? Can Craig Finn keep writing the wittiest lyrics in rock music? Will every review make a Springsteen comparison? The answer to all of these questions is yes.

Stay Positive was released in digital form last month and like it's predecessors gets off to a rocking start with "Constructive Summer" which revisits Boys and Girls in America's theme of partying with friends while tossing in a toast to "St. Joe Strummer" who "might have been our only decent teacher". "Sequestered in Memphis" keeps the rocking party going but throws some shadows in the lyrics. There are subpoenas and sequesters, and the lyrics seem to be the response to an interrogation. In Craig Finn's addled world you don't go back to her place when you leave the bar, you go to "someplace where she cat sits".

When a harpsicord leads off the third song "One for the Cutters" you start to realize you may not be in Minnesota anymore. Kids are being killed, suspects are on the run, and every townie is being paraded to the police station. What follows in the album are the consequences to the partying. Characters are older but not wiser, and aging but not gracefully. Holly (who like Gideon and Charlemagne are never named) may be in worse shape than where she was left in the song "First Night" from BAGIA. "Lord I'm Discouraged", a heartbreaking ballad with a monster guitar solo finds the singer pining away for her and praying "she don't die".

Even the title track "Stay Positive" warns "There's gonna time a time when the scene'll seem less sunny.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By TC on July 25, 2008
Format: Audio CD
I have to admit that I came pretty late to The Hold Steady party but better late than never. I picked up their 2006 release Boys and Girls in America about 6 months ago and quickly followed it up with Separation Sunday and Almost Killed Me. After fully immersing myself in those albums I was more than ready for this release. Stay Positive could be The Hold Steady's masterpiece, but somehow I think that album is still to come. What it is, however, is one of the finest albums in a year of fine albums.

In the rock press The Hold Steady is often referred to as a unique blending of The Replacements and Bruce Springsteen, but they'r much more than that. In the opening track "Constructive Summer" they mine the ground formerly occupied by another Minneapolis band, Husker Du and name drops Joe Strummer opining that "I think he might have been our only decent teacher". The song is similar to many of their earlier works except that the characters are older and a bit more damaged a world of dashed hopes and diminishing expectations. Craig Finn writes abotu these scenes as if he's not only lived them, but breathed them and drank them down. Never is this more in evidence than on the second track, and obvious single "Sequestered in Memphis" a rollicking account of a one night stand. If your not singing along by the second chorus of this one then this band is not for you.

Despite it's title Stay Positive is a fairly dark album in content. On Boys and Girls in America the characters were young hard partiers who still had their optimism. Now they're older and more beaten up by life. On "One for the Cutters" with it's murder mystery theme and harpsichord (!) tones this is in particular evidence.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By D. G. Bagley on July 16, 2008
Format: Audio CD
This excellent record deserves to be played loud. Unfortunately, it's been so aggressively mastered, that I haven't been able to turn it up without distorting.
I'll gladly pay twice if somebody can tell me that the vinyl was treated differently.
Musically, this is the best album of the year.
Sonically, the wrong mastering for what should be a loud, dynamic rock masterpiece.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By C. Mack on July 17, 2008
Format: Audio CD
It is another Hold Steady album and another set of songs about scenes, parties, drugs, and drinking played over classic rock music. On the surface it may seem like that formula would be getting stale 4 albums into the bands career, but there are enough new wrinkles added this time around to keep things fresh.

The base sound is very similar to "Boys and Girls In America", it's more rocking, fist-pumping, and arena-ready than "Separation Sunday", another step in the bands sonic path that is to be expected based on their last album. What they've added are some subtle musical touches (a harpsichord and banjo, most notably) and a shift in lyrical subject matter. Where as their previous albums were all about the parties themselves, "Stay Positive" focuses on the aftermath, including a murder mystery that plays out over a few of the tracks.

"Constructive Summer" is the best anthem they've written, it has a definite punk influence and will probably be a huge hit in a live setting. There are a few other anthems throughout the album, "Sequestered In Memphis" and "Stay Positive" are notable standouts. I think this album really succeeds on the slower songs. Where as on "Boys & Girls" the slower songs dragged the album down in my opinion, here they really take the album to a whole other level. "One for the Cutters" is slower track, but it is also an excellent track that stands up amongst the bands best.

The trademark Craig Finn wit is all over the album, as expected, my personal favorite gem this time around is from "Sequestered In Memphis": "In the barlight, she looked alright/In the daylight, she looked desperate/That's alright, I was desperate too.
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Bonus tracks?
There is a U.K. "limited edition" version listed on Amazon (for considerably more money) that says it has 2 bonus tracks.
Jul 5, 2008 by Tom Gannon |  See all 6 posts
Won't play on my computer!
Yes, I am. I thought it was just my CD Being defective but now I'm wondering if it's something else? Pisses me off because this CD is the only way to get the bonus tracks, at least until someone uploads them online.
Jul 16, 2008 by Matthew Lingo |  See all 5 posts
The 3 bonus tracks should be under "Track 12"
Jul 24, 2008 by Tom Gannon |  See all 2 posts
Does vinyl version include mp3 download as well?
I will let you know next week when the vinyl comes out!
Jul 15, 2008 by Robert T. Stroup |  See all 2 posts
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