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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A welcome Wilco return!
Being an enthusiast of Wilco's more experimental phase (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, a Ghost is Born), I kind of missed the boat with Sky Blue Sky. You know sometimes you can't explain why an album misses the mark, any more than you can explain what makes a classic album a classic album, it just didn't do it for me. With Wilco (the album), Jeff Tweedy has done an In Rainbows (a...
Published on 17 Jun 2009 by Mr. J. D. Moore

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2.0 out of 5 stars come in wilco
Oh my lord what a disappointment, couple of great tracks but way way to middle of the road to be a contender...I'm starting to get worried about the bands future!
Published 5 months ago by Richard Clark


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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A welcome Wilco return!, 17 Jun 2009
By 
This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
Being an enthusiast of Wilco's more experimental phase (Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, a Ghost is Born), I kind of missed the boat with Sky Blue Sky. You know sometimes you can't explain why an album misses the mark, any more than you can explain what makes a classic album a classic album, it just didn't do it for me. With Wilco (the album), Jeff Tweedy has done an In Rainbows (a lazy comparison maybe), and staddled the line of being faithful to their genre a la Being There and the more free thinking experi-jams of later works. Most importantly the album is crammed with class A tunesmithery which hangs together beautifully and, to me anyway, has that gonna-be-a-classic feel to it, where the sequencing of the tracks is of huge importance. The song writing is eclectic and holds ones interest (and frequently, ones breath) from start to finish and the band play beautifully, with tinkering, tinkling guitar runs and beautifully understated keys and piano motifs just bubbling under Jeff's intimate, confessional vocal. Sounds great wherever you are but highly recommended through a decent set of headphones with, preferably and decent glass of red wine and the sun just dipping below the horizon. Everyone should have this in their collection.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wilco the album - a one hump or two hump camel?, 2 July 2009
By 
Red on Black - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
A few years back I found myself part of a persecuted minority. I was sadly part of those few deluded souls who felt that Wilco's "Sky blue sky" was a brilliant album that included tunes with dangerous hints of melody and some of there greatest songs (Impossible Germany is by any standards in the Wilco top 5). True it lacked the experimentation of the wonderful "Yankee Foxtrot Hotel" but Jeff Tweedy had followed this with the equally experimental "Ghost is born" and frankly after listening to the 15 minute drone dirge on that album "less than you think" I needed a break from his tablet induced moroseness.

"Sky blue Sky" was labelled in some quarters (very stupid quarters it has to be said) as "Dad rock" and some people started to talk about Wilco as if they had died and been replaced by some back to basics alt country monster. What then about the Wilco (the album), can it satisfy both the experimentalists and the traditionalists? The answer is it does not need to. Wilco are band that don't stand still and all of their albums are mini statements of where Jeff Tweedy's mental condition and state of happiness can be located. As it stands for the present it is at the happier end of the scale and we should be thankful for that. WTA is very different in many respects from "Sky blue sky" but it is not a radical departure.

The songs throughout the album are hook laden, melodic but also challenging. Some are very poppy in a "Summerteeth" way, others could be straight of Sky blue sky and equally importantly a couple would have sat easily on "Bring there" which by any standards is their masterpiece (RIP the late great Jay Bennett one of the drivers of Wilco who died tragically young at the age of 45 in May 2009)

The album starts off with the Velvet Underground driven riff of "Wilco the song" packed with ironic and funny lyrics from Tweedy and a wonderful start to the album as he playfully asks -

"Do you dabble in depression,
Is someone twisting a knife in your back,
Are you being attacked,
Oh, this is a fact,
That you need to know,
Oh, oh, oh, oh Wilco",

Next up is the lovely "Deeper down" which is followed by 3 of the albums highlights. "One wing" is a very reflective and sparse love song which I find very difficult to stop playing at the present. Nels Cline again proves here that he is one of the great original rock guitarists with a wonderful solo. Black Bull Nova could have been on Ghost is born. It drives along with a beat not unlike Spiders but is a very different song. It is very much "experimental Wilco and ends in a huge cacophony of Clines guitar work and thumping piano. Next up is "You and I" a lovely duet with the Fiest. It is lightweight and gorgeous pop music.

"Country disappeared" is a grower and the more I hear it the more I sense that this might be a live anthem for the band. "I'll Fight" on the other hand could be in next weeks American country chart it is matched in pop terms by "Sunny feeling" a highly commercial slice of Americana. The album ends with "Everlasting" a classic Wilco sound and song which I suspect may be the best on the album.

All Wilco albums creep up on you with little nuances and subtleties and perhaps a weakness of Wilco the album might be its sheer accessibility suggesting that some inner depth may be missing? Time will be the only judge of its durability. But for now its one of my favourite albums of 2009 which is a high compliment bearing in mind what a great year this is turning out to be. Let us finally leave with a quote from the wonderful Aquarium Drunkard blog which puts in words far more eloquently than I can muster a judgement on the band which any true Wilco fan can endorse -

"Wilco (The Album) refuses to settle for mediocrities--both from itself and its audience--and is the more courageous album for it. And if the sound of six of the world's best musicians banging out spangled and bejewelled pop-rock doesn't get you off, then you may want to reconsider your record collection".
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14 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wilco deliver a masterpiece, 16 Jun 2009
By 
Johnny Rocker (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
In a world absorbed in chaos, Wilco deliver a cohesive and effortlessly confident masterpiece. It's an album crafted by a group of souls that have found a common thread which weaves a sound of pure emotion, exuding sheer joy and hope in current times when such feelings appear out of reach to many.

If you are coming to Wilco for the first time, then buy with confidence.

If you are a well travelled fan, this album, for the very reasons above, could feel lightweight on first hearing. The groove that connects the members of this group etches an album void of the jarring and dischordant edges that have been the trademark of Jeff Tweedy's merry men over their albums in the `Noughties'.

If intial listening to `Summerteeth' and `Yankee Hotel Foxtret' required an element of perceptive re-tuning of how one listened to a Wilco record, then `Wilco (the album)' almost requires a perceptive de-tuning when listening to it. In strictly Wilco terms only, it's their `Wilco Lite' record. On the surface at least.

Their prior albums have spanned such a kaleidoscope of sonics and styles, albeit rooted in Tweedy's infused sense of American musical heritage, that to even suggest the notion that Wilco's 8th album could possibly offer anything approaching a fresh experience for their established fans would seem far fetched. Yet somehow, ths album does exactly that.

The album opener is a congruent rocker. A manifesto proclamation that now that Wilco - the band - have found a peace within themselves, they can offer a musical 911 / 999 service to their fans and spread the good vibes! How charming. It is alarming infectious.

But the lead `radio' track on this album is `You never know', surely a homage to George Harrison's `All Things Must Pass' era, consciously or not, which insists you play it on repeat.

`Bull black nova' is a Loose Fur-esque screamer.

`Deeper Down', `Country disappeared', `Solitaire' are fine mid-tempo Wilco tracks.

`You and I' (the duet with Feist), `I'll Fight' and `One Wing' are sing-a-long-ingly sweet`n'sour love songs.

The album closes with the affecting `Everlasting Everything', which unintentionally will no doubt carry an intensity for long term Wilco fans, who may find it hard to not listen to the soul baringly straight talking lyric ('Everything alive must die...') and avoid having a thought or two for the former Wilco member Jay Bennett, who died last month.

Whilst this record neither displays emotions of uncontrolled angst, nor laconic aloofness, it is a record that is hard not to listen to over and over again. Wilco have delivered a damn near perfect album.

Buy and enjoy.
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2.0 out of 5 stars come in wilco, 26 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
Oh my lord what a disappointment, couple of great tracks but way way to middle of the road to be a contender...I'm starting to get worried about the bands future!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Wilco - Wilco, 19 July 2010
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This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
Its easy to take for granted that Wilco just produce brilliant album after brilliant album, and this one is no different.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Have you had enough of the old? Wilco will love you, baby..., 4 Nov 2009
By 
A. Sweeney "I don't care what you call me" (Brighton, East Sussex) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
When I'd finished listening to this album for the first time, my immediate thoughts were what a good album it was and how instantly likeable and listenable it was. After the second hearing, I started to think that it was more than good, that it may be a little bit special. From the third listen onwards, it has firmly established itself as one of the best albums I've heard all year and, although perhaps not many Wilco purists would agree, it is now my favourite Wilco album ever. There's just something about the cohesive nature of the album, the fantastic melodies, the classic harmonies... it's as if they've taken the very best of each genre of rock from the last five decades and distilled it into one easy to swallow and delightfully tasting album. However, however much fun you have spotting the influences throughout, it remains unmistakably Wilco - and that is what makes it such a great piece of work.

From the Neil Young-esque opener, "Wilco (The Song)", which seems to 'lovingly borrow' the riff from Warren Zevon's "Werewolves Of London" and is too catchy for its own good (I was singing it for days), to "Everlasting Everything" which is reminiscent of Crowded House at their haunting best, via the echoes of George Harrison in "You Never Know", every single track is just so eminently pleasing in its own way. "One Wing" is both a superb rock song and a wonderful love song, "Black Bull Nova", again, reminds me of Crowded House at their most inventive. I could easily go on - this is a very strong collection of songs without a single track to let it down.

Nearly every review I have read about this album attempts to put it in context with the rest of Wilco & Jeff Tweedy's career, which is fair enough, but I believe that if "Wilco (The Album)" was a debut album by anyone, people would be falling over themselves to lavish praise on this album - certainly praise a lot higher than I've collectively seen for this, their seventh studio album. In fact, "Wilco (The Album)" is a perfect way to introduce people (who have never discovered Wilco before) to the brilliance of the band. It's a remarkable piece of work and stands head and shoulders above most of the albums released this year.

A truly great and thoroughly enjoyable album.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Wilco (The Review), 17 Oct 2009
By 
J. Jenkins (Dudley Port, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
An album which slowly reveals it's charms, much like previous effort Sky Blue Sky, Wilco (the album) largely sticks to the same template of tasteful rock classicism, with only krautrock freak out Bull Black Nova approaching the head-spinning experimentalism of albums like a Ghost is Born.

Fittingly for a self titled LP, there are plenty of callbacks to their previous work, with Wilco (the Song) and Sonny Feeling emulating the shimmering pop of Summerteeth, Solitaire and Country Dissapeared sharing the porch ballad feel of much of Sky Blue Sky, and I'll Fight and One Wing being the closest they've come to the mark one Americana of their debut for some time. The later song is particularly special, with one of Tweedy's finest, most emotive vocal performances to date.

This is certainly a more contented Wilco we're dealing with, and while it's great that Tweedy's found some peace, there's something a little irksome about the chiding vocal of You Never Know, where you're basically being told to cheer up by someone who's spent the good part of two decades making currency from his neurosis. But this upbeat, eager to please incarnation of the band has certainly resulted in one of their most accessible albums to date.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Just no point, 26 Jan 2012
By 
This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
I just can't see the point in listening to this. Wilco have become so self-referential - if not self-reverential - that they've all but disappeared up their own backside. Don't bother. For exuberance and honesty, get "Being There"; for occasional gems among tons of padding, get "A Ghost is Born" or "Sky Blue Sky"; for gobsmacking, ground-breaking album of the century genius, get "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot". But if you haven't already got YHF, why are you even reading this?
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a real old fashioned grower - buy, buy, buy!, 20 Aug 2009
By 
This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
At first i wasn't sure about "Wilco", in fact on first listen i was hugely disappointed, especially after playing "sky blue sky" to death and fixating in particular on "side with the seeds" for long periods. I suppose i was expecting more of the experimental side of Wilco and looking forward to Nels Cline being let off the leash again however i must say i have now fallen hook line and sinker for nearly all of the songs.The sequencing of the tracks is maybe top heavy and not quite right as the first four songs are without doubt the strongest, and that duet with Feist seems like an obvious record company ploy for radio play and a possible hit, but these are minor gripes. What a back catalogue this band is amassing, there's still noone to touch them at the moment, long may they continue!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great album from a great band, 17 July 2009
By 
J. H. Bretts "jerard1" - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Wilco (the album) (Audio CD)
This is another excellent album from one of my favourite bands, with a great mix of songs, moods and styles. Jeff Tweedy gets better and better as a songwriter with a unique vision and way with words.The supporting musicianship of the rest of the band is superb.

One Wing is an aching love song of dramatic intensity:the album is worth buying for this track alone!
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