On the Hold Steady’s Soon-To-Be Live Anthem, “Rock and Roll Problems”


So if you’re assembling your Heaven Is Whenever checklist, we’ve already got the elegy-for-a-fallen-scenestress, “Hurricane J,” the vaguely mournful, piano-assisted theme-setting ballad; up next in the cosmology, if past Hold Steady records/promotional campaigns are to be trusted, is the song with the indelible riff, the one that will dependably get the floor bouncing at Bowery Ballroom or wherever the band decides to kick off a new tour. And so indeed: meet “Rock and Roll Problems,” Heaven Is Whenever‘s second single, the kind of tour-warrior anthem that sustains bands of all stripes on the road, with meta lyrics about the sound kinda sucking and audiences not paying attention and general band fatigue, set to a riff that’s pretty much designed to pull everyone in the room out of the exact fugue the song describes. No doubt it will. Hear the song now at Vulture.

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