Daily Distraction: Listen to new Craig Finn song 'Messing with the Settings'

Don't miss the first single from the Hold Steady frontman's forthcoming solo album, 'A Legacy of Rentals'

Joel Oliphint
Columbus Alive
Craig Finn

I didn't know I needed a new Craig Finn song until today, when the Hold Steady frontman released "Messing with the Settings," the first single from forthcoming solo album A Legacy of Rentals, out May 20 on Positive Jams/Thirty Tigers.

Anchored by piano, guitar, ambient loops and a climactic string section, "Messing with the Settings" is a story song, as is Finn's custom, with spoken-word verses and a sung chorus ("At sundown it feels like I'm riding a train I'm not on"). In this song, like much of his material, Finn tosses off lines like they're throwaways, something he just thought of. But in reality most songwriters would give their right arms for just one or two of Finn's throwaways.

“Memory is a major theme through A Legacy of Rentals, and I wanted the first song on the record to open on that note," Finn said in a statement. "This song is literally a eulogy. It’s delivered by someone who has lost touch with the recently deceased but still finds them important. Musically, it really explores the line between talking and singing, which was something we leaned into on this record. We wanted to make this song an incantation of sorts. It also features the beautiful 14-piece string section that played on a lot of these songs. I wanted it to have a cinematic feel, like Gone With The Wind or something like that.”

Give it a listen below.