July 05, 2004

Why Wilco?

Wilco have never excited me. Every so often I would get a copy of something they released (i.e. Summerteeth, Being There, Mermaid Avenue w/Billy Bragg) and I would enjoy it, but I don't get the sudden worship of them by so many. Is it that there's a vacuum left by the loss of some other band or bands - a void created by a break-up of some old and beloved favourite artist, or by a nosedive in that band or bands previous stellar quality? A raw gaping wound that now must be filled by someone or something similar, but that 'someone or something' must be great, must be renowned by their peers and their critics alike - you must have... you will accept... nothing but the best to replace your old fave. Maybe it's a result of the overzealous idoltry of so many rock critics concerning Wilco's last release,

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, and the just released A Ghost is Born. The ingesting of enough over the top platitudes, praise, fawning, and 'oh god, I want to have your baby ' reviews can leave quite an impression on some readers and may just plant an 'agressive rock critic/passive rock fan' engineered seed. A seed which may have blown free from a weedy plant sprouting in the previously postulated 'vacuum'. Let's call that plant Hype and the flowers it's seeds produce have had many, many, many names. Unfortunately, great bands are hyped in the same manner as mediocre ones - I'm not saying Wilco are mediocre, it's just that this album probably won't change your life, as I read some fan claim, or cause a reaffirmation of faith (unless you believe that Jesus... sorry, Jeff... Tweedy can do no wrong) then you can drop to your knees right now in a perfect rapture the envy of a Jimmy Swaggart fan club president.


A Ghost is Born is now available in record shops everywhere.
some review links (good+bad)-
stylus magazine
tiny mix tapes

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