Hold Steady Tour for Boys and Girls in Ireland, Scotland, France, the Netherlands, England, etc., and Oh Yeah, America

The price of fame for The Hold Steady took the form of a hipper-than-thou crowd in Brooklyn a couple of weeks ago, a crowd appalled at the possibility of beer soiling their immaculate Urban Outfitters threads, but not too proud to sip Pabst Blue Ribbon out of the can. Explain that one to me. Anyway, as my companions and I received dirty looks for screaming along to "Massive Nights" after a beer or five, the truth dawned on me. The $100 tickets on Craigslist suddenly made sense. Well, wouldn't you know it folks, people read music magazines! Especially One That Shall Not Be Named and decide that they just MUST check out this band, even if they hate beer and ecstatic drunken crowds and the boozy resurrection of classic rock. Oh, wait. I just described a Hold Steady show. Please go away and daintily sip your $5 beer where the word "daintily" is actually part of the territory. Thank you.

Love 'em or hate 'em, 2006 was a Hold Steady kinda year, as they showed up on a ton of best-of lists and landed their mugs on Letterman. In a few weeks, they'll be bringing the killer party across the pond and converting European crowds with a single power chord. Sweet.

Back in time for Spring Break 2k7, y'all!: