I’m a big fan of Wilco’s early releases, but for some reason they dropped off my radar after 2001’s wonderful Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. They’ve released seven albums in the two decades since and I don’t think I’ve heard any of them all the way through.
Wilco’s 2007 Sky Blue Sky, the band’s sixth album, is a mellow affair. As such, I should really give it another try. I’m a big fan of Wilco’s first four albums but never got into 2004’s A Ghost is Born for some reason. I bought this one out of habit but didn’t pay much attention to it at the time.
Hearing today’s random SOTD has me regretting that. This is a lovely acoustic song, very reminiscent of Elliott Smith, and exactly the kind of thing I enjoy from Jeff Tweedy and Wilco.
#11 – Boyhood (2014)
How often do you see a movie that is unlike anything else ever made?
The unique achievement of Richard Linklater’s Boyhood — that it was shot over 12 years, capturing its main character’s entire childhood in two and a half hours — would make it worthy of this list almost regardless of its quality.
But Linklater used his storytelling conceit to tell a deep, poignant story about the life of an ordinary kid without succumbing to sentimentality or melodrama. He found poetry in the everyday moments that build up to shape a life.
Here’s a track from Wilco’s sophomore album, 1996’s Being There. This two-disc album was the alt-country band’s first foray into the more experimental sounds for which they would receive widespread acclaim in later years.
A double album loosely based on the relationship between musicians and their fans, Being There features some straightforward bops alongside fascinating sonic detours.
Wilco’s Sky Blue Sky was released in 2007, three years after the disappointing A Ghost is Born, and by that time I’d moved on.
2001’s Yankee Hotel Foxtrot was a ground-breaking masterwork following a handful of excellent releases, but Ghost stopped the band in their tracks. To be honest, I can’t say with any conviction that A Ghost is Born is a bad album. I just know it left me cold.