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ALBUM REVIEW | ROCK

The Hold Steady, ‘Teeth Dreams’

It’s been four years since the last Hold Steady album, and the rock quintet wastes no time reestablishing its high-energy bona fides on “Teeth Dreams.” The New York-by-way-of-Minneapolis rockers — who cut their “Teeth” near Nashville — erupt out of the speakers on “I Hope This Whole Thing Didn’t Frighten You” with frontman Craig Finn spinning a gripping yarn about old friends with bad intentions that manages to reassure and alarm. From there it’s all dense rock propulsion — including “On With the Business” which sounds like the aural equivalent of an impending bar brawl — on the group’s sixth album and first on its own Positive Jams imprint. Breathers come in the form of the ambling “The Ambassador” and the achingly vulnerable “Almost Everything.” The album closes with the epic “Oaks,” a nearly nine-minute dirge that radiates a woozy, submerged quality with a strafing maelstrom of a guitar outro that splits the difference between Neil Young and Radiohead and is packed with a sense of both dread and release. (Out Tuesday)


ESSENTIAL “On With the Business”

The Hold Steady play the House of Blues April 17.

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