Monday, March 23, 2009

820. Wilco - Being There (1996)

Track Listing

1. Misunderstood
2. Forget The Flowers
3. I Got You (At The End Of The Century)
4. Red Eyed And Blue
5. Was I In Your Dreams
6. Dreamer In My Dreams
7. Lonely One
8. Why Would You Wanna Live
9. Kingpin
10. Someone Else's Song
11. Outta Mind (Outta Sight)
12. Someday Soon
13. Sunken Treasure
14. Say You Miss Me
15. Hotel Arizona
16. What's The World Got In Store
17. Far Far Away
18. Monday


This double album by Wilco is a smorgasbord of styles. It starts off with a psychedelic ballad, moves on to country rock and then to early Stones-like Blues Rock. This makes for a very long album that rarely bores, but it also makes for something not very cohesive and which often sounds very derivative.

The problem with a lot of the retro stuff which now starts to appear on the list is that it often clings so close to what it is trying to evoke that it ends up creating lesser copies of the originals. This happened with Stereolab and Can and now with Wilco and the Stones.

Fortunately Wilco are varied enough to be able to break away from that. At times their references are quite explicit such as in
Someone Else's Song, a whole track dedicated to sounding like Bob Dylan and referring in the lyrics how much that song sounds like Someone Else's Song. This knowing dig would be funnier if they didn't often commit the same sin. In the end I liked the album, all the tracks are very well crafted, but I was also constantly annoyed by parts of it, even if I like their influences I dislike when they cling to close to them.

Track Highlights

1. Misunderstood
2. Say You Miss Me
3. Kingpin
4. Someone Else's Song

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

Taking its name from a 1979 movie of the same name, the self-produced effort featured more surrealistic and introspective writing than their previous album. This was due in part to several significant changes in Tweedy's life, including the birth of his first child. Musically, it juxtaposed the alternative country styles songs reminiscent of Uncle Tupelo with psychedelic, surreal songs. It was the only Wilco album with steel guitarist Bob Egan and the last with multi-instrumentalist Max Johnston.


No comments: