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Star Wars Reviews


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This is a particularly badly written one.

 

http://exclaim.ca/Music/article/wilco-star_wars

 

The worst reviews are the ones that merely compare past albums with the current one. It's a crutch that I think a lot of critics rely on too much. In those cases, they don't really evaluate the music as they hear it, but rather set up expectations that they arbitrarily decide whether they meet. Not only is this one really bad about that, but this sentence makes me wonder if the reviewer got a different version of The Whole Love, because none of that "flourished" on the album:

 

"Star Wars takes the Krautrock and Sonic Youth-style jams that flourished on the previous album into a more accessible format, to diminishing returns."

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The worst reviews are the ones that merely compare past albums with the current one.

I remember an episode of Siskel & Ebert, and they were debating the merits of Scorsese's Casino. IIRC, Siskel gave it a thumbs down, because he thought it too derivative of Goodfellas. Ebert, (who always championed Scorsese, since the beginning) scoffed at him and asked him if this was someone else's movie, would he like it? And Siskel admitted that if it was anyone else's movie, it would be a great movie.

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I'm glad to see the mostly positive reviews, but think overall the album is still being fairly consistently underrated. One's ever evolving subjective relationship to the work is really the bottom line, & I think history will be ever kinder to this one than the current reviews are.

 

There are two places where you can rate it & have your vote count- metacritic & rate your own music. So, if you are so inclined, stop over & weigh in, if you already haven't...

 

Anyhow, it's showing up on the metacritic radar now, with 12 reviews weighing in for a very respectable score of 83 (out of 100) from critics & 8.8 (out of 10) from users.

http://www.metacritic.com/music/star-wars/wilco

 

It's doing as well at metacritic, as it is, oddly, poorly over at rateyourmusic.com, where it's behind both "A.M." & "Wilco (The Album" & only ahead of "Wilco The Book CD" & "Mermaid Ave. Vol. III".

https://rateyourmusic.com/artist/wilco

As the number of reviews increases, "Star Wars" score (85) on metacritic is going up & up... now above even "The Whole Love" (83), even with "The Mermaid Ave. Session" & "Kicking Television: Live In Chicago" & just behind "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" (87)...pretty impressive. Other scores: "Sky Blue Sky" (73), "Wilco (The Album" (76), "A Ghost Is Born" (81)...

 

Things over at rateyourmusic.com are still pretty much the opposite... oddly enough (since the user rating at metacritic is 8.6)

 

 

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4 & 1/2 stars (out of 5) from Rolling Stone!
"In the album's most carefree moments, of which there are many, he sounds at home in himself — never an easy move for one of rock's top chroniclers of midlife man-malaise. "I belong to the stars in the sky," he sings on "Random Name Generator," making a blues boast out of spacey poesy and totally pulling it off. Give it up for the man. He's got the Force by the spaceballs."
http://www.rollingstone.com/music/albumreviews/wilco-star-wars-20150724

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5 Stars (out of 5) from The Independent, "Even by Wilco’s adventurous standards, Star Wars is possibly the most unusual, exploratory work of the band’s existence."
http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/music/reviews/wilco-star-wars--album-review-jeff-tweedy-throws-down-the-gauntlet-with-a-radical-take-on-americana-10412763.html

9 (out of 10) from Drowned In Sound: "You might surmise from the above that Star Wars is a bit of a hodgepodge of styles, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Everything sounds fresh, new and different, but every song is still recognisably Wilco; it just sounds like Wilco at their best. They’re my favourite band and this is an always-welcome reminder that my favourite band is better than your favourite band."
http://drownedinsound.com/releases/18914/reviews/4149218

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They just reinforced my faith in them with this release. Best album since YHF in my opinion. And I loved everything since by the way. Star Wars is just on that tier one level. I've developed Wilco fever again. I just bought the Dec 5-12th bundle roadcase. Any opinions on it?

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I get the feeling that the reviews that are just coming in are the ones that are (rightly)giving more praise than the earlier reviews gave out. It wasn't the case for all of them but the earlier reviews were less praiseworthy, probably because they were rushed out as for once even they hadn't heard the record before the rest of us, and the later reviewers have had a week or so to let the record sink in and reveal its greatness.

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I'm a die hard Wilco fan and sometimes guest on an indie music podcast called Chunky Glasses. Last week, I fulfilled a dream of talking about Wilco on mic with a group of other music fans. So here is the link to a discussion of Star Wars:

http://www.chunkyglasses.com/content/episode-126-wilco-star-wars-tame-impala-currents

iTunes link:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/chunkyglasses-the-podcast/id507265965?mt=2#episodeGuid=4f705ee1e4b0aad9750e2e27%3A52f6867de4b05acac210ba0a%3A55b55cd9e4b04064779502bf

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OMG, Entertainment Weekly managed to squeeze in a short review of Star Wars between their adulation articles about Kayne, Taylor Swift & Beyoncé. They even gave it an "A-".

We can now all rest easy.

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Not well received by this Spanish critic

 

http://www.efeeme.com/disco-star-wars-de-wilco/

 

 

Google translation (approx. you know...):

Wilco
"Star Wars"
D8PM RECORDS
 
Text: Fernando Ballesteros.
 
 
It is already clear that "Star Wars", the new album by Wilco, has been a surprise because no one expected his appearance, let alone free download. But once it was clear that they have been given their share of headlines and space in social networks and continue clearing doubts, the question whether it is good or fulfills the expectations that can be deposited in the group of Jeff Tweedy in 2015, is say, fourteen years after the publication of an album that changed everything, at least for them and for many of us.
 
These days it is common to read that Wilco have followed the lead of Beyonce and Kanye West and My mind goes to 2001, when Chicago was already also pioneers when it comes to hang free its "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" after receiving pumpkins from his record Reprise which he thought he deserved that masterpiece not be edited. And that puts us in front of the glorious past of the band as it acts as a yardstick conditioning increasingly presented with new material.
 
Judging "Star Wars" with the highest level of demand for the new album be as important, or casting off prejudice and almost as if it was a name that did not know, the disc does not approach the excellence group.
 
This "Star Wars" is guitarrera, short, no rupture with the recent past and almost devoid of pretension. Or so it seems to imply the leader of the group, when asked why the disk that have given answers that did for fun. Perfect. Let's see if it's as funny as we find in the future grooves of these eleven songs. Although one might almost say ten if we reduce the initial story category 'EKG'.
 
The density of 'More' with an almost addictive and in any case, nice chorus, puts me on guard against the possibility of being in something bigger than I feared. 'Random name generator' repeats robust speech guitars but at the height of 'The joke Explained' with that dylanian Tweedy stop on a certain aroma posed with Velvet, and are asking for a change of pace. Too bad this does not come with 'You satellite' leaden and boring to death distorted.
 
But all is not lost. 'Taste the Ceiling' makes others think of Wilco, who among mountains of experimental dissonance and deconstruction think they called it, suddenly came off with a pearl for all audiences. This is not so precious and so valuable, but it does the trick. At the end of the day, live better or worse times, who has a natural gift for melody has to keep proving. And it's not the only time they do, because 'Where do I begin' is another example of those who started Wilco quiet and noisy excited to finish or just weirdos.
 
'Cold slope' is also among the best of a lot on which 'Pickled ginger' returns us to the rocky tone and somewhat uninspired by the assembly and 'King of you' installs cadence dragged us into some and uncomfortable feeling drowsy. And although the closing 'Magnetized' evokes shining and glorious past looking at Abbey Road, the general feeling that makes the album is that this is a minor work, perhaps transitional, they will know where. This time they have distanced himself from the pressure appearing with songs that sometimes seem even sketches of something bigger. To understand, Wilco are playing, without training or work too hard in a lower division of their share. And winning, of course.
 
Of course, even using the less demanding scale, they miss the days when everything he touched Tweedy dazzled, even if it was a side project band mother. Those days when disc Loose Fur, for example, settled among the most exciting of the year. Never again be 2001, not 2005, but I still think that this man and his group consolidated this training and so much more to give and show again. There will come a day when we surprise and not only by the unexpected release date of an album, nor how to get it to his followers. We will continue waiting. Spare them credit.
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 .....when Chicago was already also pioneers when it comes to hang free its "Yankee Hotel Foxtrot" after receiving pumpkins from his record Reprise which he thought he deserved that masterpiece not be edited.

 

Oh google translate.  You almost replace humans except for your inability to deal with pronouns and idioms.

 

I'll try my skills on the pull quote:

 

"Although the closing track 'Magnetized' evokes gazing at the past glories of Abbey Road, the general sensation this record leaves you with is that we're in front of a minor work, perhaps a transition, only they will know to where."

 

That last phrase is bugging me, but.... ya know.

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OMG, Entertainment Weekly managed to squeeze in a short review of Star Wars between their adulation articles about Kayne, Taylor Swift & Beyoncé. They even gave it an "A-".

We can now all rest easy.

 

"Star Wars" was the featured review in this week's print version of EW, which was surprising.  Besides the "A-," they also stamped the album as the "Rock Record of the Summer."

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"Receiving pumpkins" line was the best thing I've ever read in a review.

 

This was not too bad either:
"the height of 'The joke Explained' with that dylanian Tweedy stop on a certain aroma posed with Velvet, and are asking for a change of pace. Too bad this does not come with 'You satellite' leaden and boring to death distorted."

 

"aroma posed with velvet" and "boring to death distorted" sound like they could be actual Jeff Tweedy lyrics. Pretty good review there.

 

But really, even the Spanish review invoked the Beatles. Does every record review need to do that? I'm sure Jeff digs the Beatles, but it's probably been a well since he discovered them and delved into their catalog. I don't see him sitting around listening to Beatles albums every day, looking for inspiration.

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I was just playing that on guitar, and while I was reading the lyrics/chords thinking about that. In this sense "From where we end to where do I begin" is a really powerful and sad line - the whole song is probably one of my favorite "love" songs, at least sad ones.

Powerful indeed!

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