I had a good feeling about the new Wilco album from a recent Pitchfork interview with Tweedy. I hardly, if ever, visit or especially consult Pitchfork but something made me go there one day on a break from work stuff. I got a different vibe from Tweedy this time around for some reason. I've read interviews to help me find my way into "getting" Wilco, and they hadn't helped yet. Something still can't push me over the cliff totally, I don't know why. It's like Italian foods I guess - technically you like all the fundamentals like the sauce, pasta and cheese. But some combos of those don't grab ya the way others do. Took me forever to finally love Lasagna, so maybe Wilco will be my new lasagna?
Tonight I think I figured out part of it, pro and con-- I wish he'd enunciate better. I can never tell what he's saying much of the time. And with the verse phrasings so spread out, it's hard to string together the full stanza's by deduction. The ratio of instrumental melody/phrases to actual vocal phrasings over the measures is pretty polar to my ears. I get impatient waiting for the next lyric to come and join the last one. I get a little bored waiting for Tweedy to muster the effort and air (per his delivery) to get out whatever next sentence he has which is supposed to blow my mind, because, well, he's Tweedy, right? He usually sounds really tired to me. But to quote Fripp (as usual): "What we hear is the way we hear." I just have to get used to Tweedy's ebb and flow which I do like a lot of the time. But the music sure is perdy. And damn if this album doesn't just feel niiiiice.
On dark back-country farm Michigan roads at 1am with no one around for miles, the only connecting thread is a charcoal gray plane (headlight'd black asphalt) and a glowing yellow median line. Murky silhouettes of giant ancient trees lining the road that appear like giant Rorschach blotches just slightly denser and darker against the black sky... a safe, lukewarm, post-game remnant beer buzz is my cozy, loose fitting flight suit -- and the new Wilco is wonderful. Like hearing a healthy campfire one lot over, the heat more heard than felt. I like that I can't tell what brand or model of instrument is being played by the band members. It's color, plucks, ticks, taks, and some booms. It could be '07, '47, '27. (Well, maybe a Martian '27.)
I can't fully express enough how much I am not an authority on Wilco... but I felt that that SBS is like their Beck's 'Sea Change'. It gave me the same feelings. Or a Harvest Moon for 2007.
There's gonna be lots of herbalizing to this one, just you watch.