Summer Sounds: Listen to the new LP from Boston indie-pop veterans the Sterns


If you blinked, clicked, or scrolled too fast, you might have missed it.

Last week, Boston indie-pop band the Sterns released a new full-length LP, the wonderfully-titled Savage Noble Steals The Ancient Riffs, and it seemingly came out of nowhere. Since the mid-2000s, the Sterns always seemed to be on the break of something big. Lineup changes, the usual ups and downs of a “band on the brink,” and growing involvement of its members’ other bands and projects (Spirit Kid, Bent Shapes, Big D & the Kids Table) weaved the Sterns in and out of the city’s music scene.

But last week they reminded us why they caught our attention in the first place: jangly, sugary, damn-near-perfect indie-pop tunes that all sound like stand-alone singles.


The album’s opening track, “The Space Race Goes On,” was first released a few years ago as part of a crop of new songs the band teased out, but recording sessions shortly afterward broke up the band. The rest of Savage Noble Steals The Ancient Riffs, however, reflects the band’s current state. It feels like a fresh start.

“This is most certainly a new full-length of new material,” Alex Sterns tells us. “Chris [Stern] and I do want to move the band forward, but, we lack resources and need to do it slowly. We’ve given this a sort of ‘soft’ release because we’ve already tried the ‘let’s hype this, hire a publicist and embark on an extensive tour even though we don’t yet have a sustainable fan base’ approach.

So it’s back to basics. It’s back to the songs. And the songs, like the ones that came before them, are really fucking good.

Listen to Savage Noble Steals The Ancient Riffs below, and hear “The Summer’s Sexiest Comedy” on Vanya Radio’s This Is 617 pretty much every day until we get sick of it.

Sterns album