Song of the Day #1,703: ‘Either Way’ – Wilco

wilco_sky_blue_skyI lost track of Wilco after 2002′s excellent Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. That album, with its eerily prescient 9/11 echoes (it was recorded before September 11, but released afterward), is compelling and emotional in ways I usually associate more with film than music.

Its follow-up, 2004′s A Ghost is Born, had all of the sonic experimentation but none of the soul. It sounded like the band trying to repeat itself.

In 2007, Wilco released Sky Blue Sky, and while I own the album I can’t say I’ve ever given it a wholehearted listen. But today’s track, the opener, has a laid-back appeal that suggests its a return to their earlier style.

Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy called this album a response to the heavy reliance on studio trickery on their previous two records: “I got nervous about the technology on Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. If you need a certain amp or pedal to make a song what it is, it isn’t a song.”

I appreciate that sentiment, though I’d argue that Yankee Hotel Foxtrot is full of great songs. But I can see why the simplicity of a track like ‘Either Way’ would be refreshing for both the band and the audience.

Maybe the sun will shine today
The clouds will blow away
Maybe I won’t feel so afraid
I will try to understand
Either way

Maybe you still love me
Maybe you don’t
Either you will or you won’t
Maybe you just need some time alone
I will try to understand
Everything has its plan
Either way
I’m gonna stay
Right for you

Maybe the sun will shine today
The clouds will roll away
Maybe I won’t be so afraid
I will understand
Everything has its plan
Either way

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5 thoughts on “Song of the Day #1,703: ‘Either Way’ – Wilco

  1. Dana says:

    I really like their sound. When I create an iTunes genius mix based on a Ben folds song, I inevitably hear wilco and I like what I hear.

  2. Shawn says:

    Uh, you practically dismissed the best writer of his generation. I can’t think of anyone in the past 25yrs (except perhaps Cobain) that would create a tragedy moreso than Jeff Tweedy if he were not part of the music scence. Wilco’s music has been more grown up in some ways in recent years but we aren’t talking Hootie and the Blowfish here. You know, there was life before YHF in 2002. I go back with this guy to Uncle Tupelo in the early 90′s. Have you ever heard Anodyne? Or how about Being There, an early Wilco album. There are very few bands worth tracking anymore, but Wilco is certainly one of them.

  3. Clay says:

    I’m a big fan of Being There and Summerteeth but I never quite got into Uncle Tupelo. At his best, I agree with your assessment of Tweedy, but I don’t know how often he’s at his best.

  4. Shawn says:

    “In 2008, Rolling Stone critic Tom Moon listed Anodyne among the 1,000 Recordings to Hear Before You Die.”

  5. Clay says:

    I’m glad I’ve heard it, then! :-)

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