Meet The Next Big Thing: Hayden

The real thing, no doubt about that.

Addicted To Noise editor Michael Goldberg reports: If you

want to hear one of the best albums released during 1995, get a copy of

Hayden's Everything I Long For--immediately. This 24-year-old

Toronto-based folk-rock slacker is so good it's hard to imagine how it's taken

nearly a year since the album (on his own Hardwood Records label) was released

for the word to start to leak out. But leak out it finally has. Hits

magazine reported last week that Hayden dined at Neil Young's house

recently--Young and his manager, Elliot Roberts, are hoping to sign Hayden to

their new Vapor Records. So are producer Scott Litt (R.E.M.; Liz Phair, etc.)

and his partners at Outpost Records. And so are execs from Geffen and

Dreamworks and lots more. What's all the excitement about? Imagine putting on

an album and discovering a young Neil Young. Or a young Bob Dylan. Or Kurt

Cobain. With a sensibility that feels of the moment and timeless

simultaneously. Take "We Don't Mind," in which Hayden gets his girlfriend to

let him call her boss and say she's sick. Or the lead off track, "Bad As They

Seem," which begins with Hayden clearing his throat. "Girl of my dreams," he

sings. "Things are as bad as they seem." Ten of the 16 songs were recorded in

Hayden Dresser's bedroom. "A lot of the songs were written and recorded within

a three hour span," the artist said during a Jan. 24 interview on L. A.'s KCRW.

(I suggest you check out the 40-minute

HREF=""> RealAudio interview and

performance.) On his debut album, Hayden sings, talks, drawls, screams his

way through cool song after cool song. Check the chrous to "Bad As They Seem,"

and, when you hear it, just try not to smile: "Someone who'll make me laugh/

Someone who will be my better half/ Keep me warm under the sack/Share with me

my midnight snack." Last time I got this excited about an album, it was

Everclear's Sparkle And Fade. Need I say more. (Also, there is a Hayden

web site. Check it out.