I picked this up yesterday on the advice of a friend...let me say I am totally gaa gaa over this band now. Its hard to peg but its a perfect blend of a lot of musical tastes I have...Neil Young is really evident and for that alone I'm really digging it, really really am.
When I listened today it sort of was the same way I felt when I first listened to Ben Harper a few years ago...the range of musical style and songwriting is so amazing.
Sounds silly, but the first time I ever heard Being There
, just a few songs in, I kind of had an idea that this was the perfect music for me and they were my new favorite band. And it was a totally-blind purchase for me. Hadn't heard any of their stuff--just read a small review in a local magazine. And I've kind of been hooked ever since.
For some strange reason I got a little twinges of different bands here and there...I kept thinking of Izzy Stradlin' for some reason too. Not sure why...some parts Black Crowes some parts...Paul Westerberg...Neil, lots of Neil (Piano and Hammond Organ) only with a better voice behind the song...the Beatles...the Stones...little Sesame Street riffs...amazing stuff
Yeah, I totally hear you on the influences there. You can hear a lot of sixties Stones in their first couple of records (especially A.M.
. Like I mentioned, I hear a lot of Beach Boys in Summer Teeth
, and there's one song on the new record ("Hummingbird") that Lennon/McCartney should be collecting royalties for. . . I hear Neil Young-style guitar playing all over the new record. And I know exactly what you're referring to by "little Sesame Street riffs", too--just can't remember the specific song right now, but yeah, it's there.Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
is the one album of theirs that I really couldn't nail down. With that record, I couldn't say, "oh, they sound like X band here", or "wow, that's where the Y band influences really come in". It's kind of it's own album. Same great songwriting as before, but with a lot of interesting little effects and whatnot (Tweedy has referred to the "holes" in the music on that album). Makes for an interesting listen. Took me a few times to get into it, but once I did, it was great.
Since you liked Being There
so much, I would definitely recommend picking up either Summer Teeth
next, if you haven't already.
Seriously, let me know if you're interested in more. Uncle Tupelo
, Tweedy's first band, are generally considered the group that started the alt.country genre, and released four really good albums in the early 90's. Wilco and Billy Bragg (along with one of your favorites, Natalie Merchant), got together a few years ago to put music to a bunch of Woody Guthrie lyrics for two albums, Mermaid Avenue I and II
. They're both really good--almost as good as the individual Wilco albums, and definitely worth checking out. Tweedy has also done some other side projects over the years (Golden Smog
, with Soul Asylum's Dave Pirner and several others--kind of a Travelling Wilburys feel), and Loose Fur
, among others, which are all pretty good, too.
And check out their record, A.M.
, too--I kind of slagged it off as my least favorite Wilco record, and that's true, but that doesn't necessarily mean it's a bad record at all. It just really speaks to how good the other records have been. A.M.
is great, and is easily worth a purchase, especially if you liked the more classic Stones/Beatles-sounding stuff on Being There