Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Would also consider this "good not great" (suppose i'm basically saying 'meh' like Jeff said in that AV club interview way back when -- sorry, Jeff). We listened on the way to Solid Sound and my girlfriend remarked, in so many words, that the lyrics are very "late career" - kinda feels like he didn't have much to say, basically. Sonically and musically there are some very cool and interesting moments. Livid is great. Title track is solid.

 

Annihilation and Say You Love Me were part of Saturday's incredible Solid Sound set and hearing them up against what is arguably Wilco's best album was ... something. Jeff can still write great lyrics but these are not his best.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 73
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

The fb group (a private group - must be “approved” to join) is called A Shot in the Arm and has 12k members.  It’s weird in that even though you have to use your real name (as opposed to here where

I really love both Cruel Country and Cousin, especially compared to Schmilco and Ode to Joy, and my understanding is that the former albums were both products of collaboration more so than the latter

I have similar feelings about Ode to Joy.  I didn't come close to giving it as many chances as you, but I listened to it plenty, saw them on the tour (their choice to open with two aggressively morose

There seems to be a lot of consensus that "Livid" is a highlight of this EP. When I first heard it, I thought that it was too bad it hadn't been developed into a more fully realized song.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Brian F. said:

There seems to be a lot of consensus that "Livid" is a highlight of this EP. When I first heard it, I thought that it was too bad it hadn't been developed into a more fully realized song.

I think "Livid" has a very cool riff and has the elements to be a highlight, but at only a minute long, it's hard to take it seriously. There are a couple of times within the track I think even the band is winking at us saying this is just a joke — namely when those video game-like sound effects come in and that random giant drum drop at 0:52.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Much better this way. A 10-inch doesn't fit neatly with 45s or with LPs. Pearl Jam did a 10-inch one year for their holiday single and it sticks out of the collection like a sore thumb.

Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Brian F. said:

Much better this way. A 10-inch doesn't fit neatly with 45s or with LPs. Pearl Jam did a 10-inch one year for their holiday single and it sticks out of the collection like a sore thumb.

 

I was excited because I have like 7 ten inches and they could use company down there at the end of the LPs. It is kind of an impractical format. 12 inch will be nice.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My CDs and LPs are shelved alphabetically by artist and chronologically within artist, so any time an artist deviates from the standard size of a CD or LP, I end up making the Sideshow Bob stepping-on-rakes noise. I'm looking at you, Bruce Springsteen's Wrecking Ball or, more recently, Green Day's Saviors.

Link to post
Share on other sites

My HSCS LP from SSF is badly scratched. I’m not hopeful but I did send Wilco HQ an inquiry about a replacement disc. My track record with pressings out of Smashed Plastic has been quite positive so for it to happen here with a disc I can’t easily replace is a bit of a bummer. (Never mind a $32 12”!)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Mine has some dark streaks on it, but it plays fine.

 

The record vendors at Solid Sound really took advantage of their exclusive with that $30-plus-tax price point for a six-song, 17-minute EP in a plain brown sleeve. Wilcoworld is selling it for $20. I got it as part of my Friend of the Festival package, so depending on how you account for the value of the other items that came as part of it, I arguably paid about $150 for it. I think the premium for a FotF package over a regular three-day pass was $200, but the only other thing in the package that I definitely would have purchased was Jeff's book, which costs about $25, and I had dinner in the lounge one night, which probably also saved me about $25. The signed poster is cool, but I wouldn't have bought a poster if one hadn't been given to me, and the same goes for the deck of Wilco-themed playing cards, the SSF stickers and the YHF keychain.

 

It's ironic, because I definitely would not have paid $30 for the EP at SSF if it hadn't been included in the FotF package, but one of the things that spurred me to purchase the package was the promise of an "exclusive" Wilco release (that turned out not to be exclusive in the way I thought) that I effectively paid a multiple of $30 for.

Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, Brian F. said:

Mine has some dark streaks on it, but it plays fine.

 

The record vendors at Solid Sound really took advantage of their exclusive with that $30-plus-tax price point for a six-song, 17-minute EP in a plain brown sleeve. Wilcoworld is selling it for $20. I got it as part of my Friend of the Festival package, so depending on how you account for the value of the other items that came as part of it, I arguably paid about $150 for it. I think the premium for a FotF package over a regular three-day pass was $200, but the only other thing in the package that I definitely would have purchased was Jeff's book, which costs about $25, and I had dinner in the lounge one night, which probably also saved me about $25. The signed poster is cool, but I wouldn't have bought a poster if one hadn't been given to me, and the same goes for the deck of Wilco-themed playing cards, the SSF stickers and the YHF keychain.

 

It's ironic, because I definitely would not have paid $30 for the EP at SSF if it hadn't been included in the FotF package, but one of the things that spurred me to purchase the package was the promise of an "exclusive" Wilco release (that turned out not to be exclusive in the way I thought) that I effectively paid a multiple of $30 for.

 
Not to veer too off topic, but were there any FotF-exclusive performances? Was the poster different from those on offer at the merch stand? We did FotF the first year it was available and didn’t feel like we got the most out of it and so we’ve not done it since. 
 

(Also hi, Brian, it’s Tyler. I don’t think most VCers know this as my forum handle 😉)

Link to post
Share on other sites

The poster was the same as the one on sale at the merch booth, as far as I could tell, but it was signed by all six Wilcos. There was apparently a pop-up performance by Nels in the lounge on Saturday afternoon, but I missed it even though it was mentioned in the email they sent us.

 

I think that if I had known where the lounge was on Friday-- by the time I went looking for it, it was closed-- and if I had gone there when the evacuation order was issued on Sunday-- when I asked if I could go there, I was told by someone from MassMOCA (incorrectly, apparently) that I had to either leave the premises or go to the Hunter Center-- I would have come closer to getting my money's worth for the FotF pass.

 

I think when I ran into you, I was on my way out to get dinner on Friday night. At that point, I didn't know that I could have had dinner in the lounge because I hadn't been there yet.

 

Anyway, It was good to see you and sorry I didn't see Bridget-- but then again, I never even ended up seeing James during the weekend. We were like ships passing in the night.

 

You need to update your location from Boston to Brooklyn now that you've blown your cover here.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Just wanted to pop in and say I like the EP a lot. Livid is a ton of fun and I agree it could have been longer. While I have no issues with Jeff's voice these days, I've been saying this for awhile, and this EP only convinces me more, that Wilco should do an instrumental album. Or at least an album more focused on instrumentation. Jeff has a lot of outlets for his songwriting these days, which is fantastic because he's an incredibly consistent songwriter. I will always want more of his songs. But what makes this iteration of Wilco special is the way they play together... the most exciting Wilco songs in the last few years have been Livid, Many Worlds, and Bird Without a Tail. It's easy to see the pattern there. Let's give some room for Mike to do more of what he does, John to get more melodic with his bass playing (and Glenn with his drumming, for that matter), and Pat, Jeff, and Nels lots of space to let it rip.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/6/2024 at 9:32 PM, TCP said:

Just wanted to pop in and say I like the EP a lot. Livid is a ton of fun and I agree it could have been longer. While I have no issues with Jeff's voice these days, I've been saying this for awhile, and this EP only convinces me more, that Wilco should do an instrumental album. Or at least an album more focused on instrumentation. Jeff has a lot of outlets for his songwriting these days, which is fantastic because he's an incredibly consistent songwriter. I will always want more of his songs. But what makes this iteration of Wilco special is the way they play together... the most exciting Wilco songs in the last few years have been Livid, Many Worlds, and Bird Without a Tail. It's easy to see the pattern there. Let's give some room for Mike to do more of what he does, John to get more melodic with his bass playing (and Glenn with his drumming, for that matter), and Pat, Jeff, and Nels lots of space to let it rip.

I made a similar suggestion on a different Wilco forum and was roasted pretty thoroughly for it.  A lot of Wilco fans, especially on that forum, don't understand that there's a huge difference between "instrumental music"  and "shredding."  The minute you suggest the band is being underutilized, folks say "you just want to hear Nels shred."  Which is dumb.  

Link to post
Share on other sites

I watched Man in the Sand the other day for the first time in probably over 20 years, and I was also listening to some of the outtakes on the Being There box, and one of the things that struck me is how much the timbre-- "is it timbre or is it 'tambre'?"-- of Jeff's voice has changed. It was so deep both when he spoke and when he sang in those days. Think of "I Thought I Held You" or "Dash 7" (tape manipulation on the latter notwithstanding). (It was also funny to watch the documentary and see skinny Jeff and chubby John.)

 

Does anyone else hear "Paperback Writer" in the riff for "Hot Sun"? Every time I hear the "Hot Sun" riff in my head, and it was stuck there for a couple of days, it segues into "Paperback Writer."

Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, Brian F. said:

Does anyone else hear "Paperback Writer" in the riff for "Hot Sun"? Every time I hear the "Hot Sun" riff in my head, and it was stuck there for a couple of days, it segues into "Paperback Writer."

Ha, no I hadn't heard that one, but "Annihilation" — which has been stuck in head relentlessly — segues into the middle of "Born Alone" from time to time for some reason.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/8/2024 at 6:48 AM, jff said:

I made a similar suggestion on a different Wilco forum and was roasted pretty thoroughly for it.  A lot of Wilco fans, especially on that forum, don't understand that there's a huge difference between "instrumental music"  and "shredding."  The minute you suggest the band is being underutilized, folks say "you just want to hear Nels shred."  Which is dumb.  

 

Yes. You can hear the difference between material that was written by a singer songwriter and arranged by a band and material that was written by a band. Most of Wilco the sextet's most stirring and memorable instrumental passages (One Sunday Morning, Bird Without a Tail, The Empty Condor, Side With the Seeds) are the product of writing or at least recording as a full band. Tweedy has shown he's capable of leaving spaces for discovery in recording assembly line/ individually tracked material, but there's a magic that only happens when all six of those guys are in Chicago at the same time to create.

 

I'm a Cousin fan but in retrospect what makes it a B Wilco record instead of an A is that the much anticipated strangeness and inventiveness that was it's mission is more often about how the songs are dressed, not how they're structured. This is a generalization of course, and if I get a "Sunlight Ends" from an assembly line production I can't say it sucks.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/6/2024 at 5:36 PM, Brian F. said:

Mine has some dark streaks on it, but it plays fine.

 

The record vendors at Solid Sound really took advantage of their exclusive with that $30-plus-tax price point for a six-song, 17-minute EP in a plain brown sleeve. Wilcoworld is selling it for $20. I got it as part of my Friend of the Festival package, so depending on how you account for the value of the other items that came as part of it, I arguably paid about $150 for it. 

 

It's ironic, because I definitely would not have paid $30 for the EP at SSF if it hadn't been included in the FotF package, but one of the things that spurred me to purchase the package was the promise of an "exclusive" Wilco release (that turned out not to be exclusive in the way I thought) that I effectively paid a multiple of $30 for.

i doubt that Belltower or Autumn set the price for the Wilco 12" but that's just a guess. 

Also, the edition you bought is different from the one that will be fulfilled via the wilcoworld pre-order. you got to customize the sleeve however you wanted, and it's an edition of 1000. the other will have artwork chosen from the ones submitted, and not sure what the pressing size will be or if it will be on white vinyl.

some enterprising soul has one of the SSF copies available for $200:
https://www.discogs.com/release/31102478-Wilco-Hot-Sun-Cool-Shroud

Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, tinnitus photography said:

i doubt that Belltower or Autumn set the price for the Wilco 12" but that's just a guess. 

Also, the edition you bought is different from the one that will be fulfilled via the wilcoworld pre-order. you got to customize the sleeve however you wanted, and it's an edition of 1000. the other will have artwork chosen from the ones submitted, and not sure what the pressing size will be or if it will be on white vinyl.

some enterprising soul has one of the SSF copies available for $200:
https://www.discogs.com/release/31102478-Wilco-Hot-Sun-Cool-Shroud

 

Customizing the sleeve is a feature? I wish I had realized that. I left mine blank since waiting in line to do arts-and-crafts seemed like not the best use of my time.

 

Thirty bucks for a 17-minute EP in a plain brown sleeve is a ridiculous price, regardless of the "limited" nature of the pressing or the color of the vinyl. I'm not sure why white vinyl is something I'm supposed to covet. It makes the dark streaks that were on the record when I pulled it out of the sleeve really stand out.

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
I posted this on another forum, after 3 listens & I:be only had time for about that many more, but everything I wrote here still stands:
"I've gotten 3 full listens in & I am absolutely knocked out! Incredible that the same sessions produced 21 "Cruel Country" tracks, the 10 on "Cousin" & these 6!

It's hard for me to imagine not including "Annihilation", "Hot Sun", "Say You Love Me" & "Livid" on the tracklist of any album...
But, to top that off (EP tracklist wise) "Ice Cream" & "Inside The Bell Bones" are both truly great as well... & force me into adding all 6 of them to my more perfect "Cousin"

I'm not a big "Pitchfork" guy, necessarily, however... when they are right, they are right...
I have 3 favorite favorite bands (Beatles Wilco - Yo La Tengo). The Beatles existed in an era of both non-albums singles & the EP- most especially in the U.K. (as opposed to U.S.).

Yo La Tengo is probably the artist(s) who have utilized the EP to it'a most glorious reward(a) ever! Pitchfork pointed out that while Wilco have done EP's before... This one is something else entirely different & major.

Yo La Tengo 's EP's usually (but not always) involve some album/better known track, surrounded by lots of non-album odds & sods wonders. "Hot Sun Cool Shroud" is more like The Beatles "Magical Mystery Tour"... A half dozen (roughly half an album's worth of tracks) totally unique tracks, but bound together thematically (rather than randomly) with all the tracks being culled specifically from the sessions for the album "Cousin"⁰.

With this EP Wilco make the biggest noise/boldest move within this sonic format (The EP) since who knows way back when!
... and alongside that...

... inevitably folks will note how utterly amazing a 16 track long "Cousin" would have been - & boy would it ever... and/or what favorite tracks here (EP) they would have rather had on "Cousin" instead of whatever their least favorite tracks on the album are... For me, while not bad, "A Bowl & A Pudding" is thr one track that felt like it was a real step below any of the others...

I understand wanting to follow the double "Cruel Country" with something different in both sound & presentation (21 songs vs. 10) & 16 songs might have been too close to that for their comfort. And "Cousin" does have a certain cohesive sound to the whole of the album listening journey - probably carefully chosen & constructed I'd guess... but, with material this great, I come down on the side of- would have rather had them make "Cousin" longer...

... I posted an article earlier in the thread that noted Glenn Kitchen had spoken candidly to SPIN about being very partisan for/attached to a number of tracks that didn't make the final list that he thought really should have...

For me I think I would have bookended the album with the two instrumentals & cut "A Bowl & A Pudding" to end up with technically a 15 track album, but operationally a 13 track album with a both a brief intro & outro...

For me The "Cousin"/"Hot Sun Cool Shroud" Sessions break down roughly thusly (Album tracks listed first, followed by EP tracks & instrumentals are listed last in any Level/Tier, & in parenthesesas well)

Level I: to
"Infinite Surprise"
"Meant To Be"
"Sunlight Ends"
"Cousin"
"Annihilation"
"Hot Sun"
"Say You Love Me"
("Livid")

Level II:
"Levee"
"Pittsburgh"
"Soldier Child"
"Ten Dead"
"Evicted"
"Ice Cream"
("Inside The Bell Bones")

Level III:
"A Bowl And A Pudding" "
 
Last edited: Jun 29, 2024
 
Link to post
Share on other sites

To each their own: I think "A Bowl and a Pudding" is the second-best track on Cousin, behind "Sunlight Ends," and I rank both at the high end of Wilco's catalog. "Sunlight Ends" might be one of my five favorite Wilco songs, and "A Bowl and a Pudding" might be in the top 20 or 25.

 

I was about to push back against the "since way back when" comment by bringing up Jar of Flies or Broken, just to name two outstanding EPs of recent vintage off the top of my head, only to realize that both of these are at least thirty years old and thus both qualify as "way back when." This made me feel really old.

Link to post
Share on other sites
20 hours ago, Brian F. said:

 

 

Thirty bucks for a 17-minute EP in a plain brown sleeve is a ridiculous price

 

 

This seems to be merch table price at a lot of bands that operate on this level.  I saw Marty Stuart and his Fabulous Superlatives last week, and their vinyl was $35.  I'm sure I could have found it for $20-ish in a record shop or online.  If I was still an active buyer of vinyl, I wouldn't have paid that price.  I mostly only buy vinyl now at gigs, and I figure the premium helps them way more than buying it from Amazon or a record store would.  But yeah, vinyl process have gotten ridiculous.

Link to post
Share on other sites
23 hours ago, lost highway said:

 

 

 how the songs are dressed, not how they're structured. 

 

This is a good way to put it.  I recall some years back Tweedy had a bee in his bonnet about people's reaction to the production on YHF and AGIB, and he was insistent that his songs could be played by him alone with an acoustic guitar.  And he proved it by going on solo tours and doing exactly that.  

 

But I think that statement has painted him into a corner.  I'm not particularly interested in hearing what one guy from a six piece band can do on his own.  I want to hear what six incredible artists can do when they work together to create pieces of music that none of them could perform on their own.  The idea that every song, no matter what the other five people play on it, can be stripped down to an acoustic guitar and one voice seems like such a self-limiting concept. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, jff said:

 

This is a good way to put it.  I recall some years back Tweedy had a bee in his bonnet about people's reaction to the production on YHF and AGIB, and he was insistent that his songs could be played by him alone with an acoustic guitar.  And he proved it by going on solo tours and doing exactly that.  

 

But I think that statement has painted him into a corner.  I'm not particularly interested in hearing what one guy from a six piece band can do on his own.  I want to hear what six incredible artists can do when they work together to create pieces of music that none of them could perform on their own.  The idea that every song, no matter what the other five people play on it, can be stripped down to an acoustic guitar and one voice seems like such a self-limiting concept. 


I agree with all of this and you've both put to words a lot of what I've been feeling about most Wilco records post- Star Wars. 

Jeff's proven what a prolific songwriter he is and I just wonder if too much of that writing is done in isolation. That is, by the time the band is involved they're not fleshing out a song anymore but filling in holes. 

 

And while I don't want Wilco to remake YHF or AGIB ad nauseam, I do miss the rewards of obsessive studio-tinkering. Those songs have a "layered" quality that I find absent on a lot of Jeff's recent output. 

 

But FWIW I really like this EP, especially Hot Sun.

Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/6/2024 at 5:36 PM, Brian F. said:

Mine has some dark streaks on it, but it plays fine.

 

The record vendors at Solid Sound really took advantage of their exclusive with that $30-plus-tax price point for a six-song, 17-minute EP in a plain brown sleeve. Wilcoworld is selling it for $20. I got it as part of my Friend of the Festival package, so depending on how you account for the value of the other items that came as part of it, I arguably paid about $150 for it. I think the premium for a FotF package over a regular three-day pass was $200, but the only other thing in the package that I definitely would have purchased was Jeff's book, which costs about $25, and I had dinner in the lounge one night, which probably also saved me about $25. The signed poster is cool, but I wouldn't have bought a poster if one hadn't been given to me, and the same goes for the deck of Wilco-themed playing cards, the SSF stickers and the YHF keychain.

 

It's ironic, because I definitely would not have paid $30 for the EP at SSF if it hadn't been included in the FotF package, but one of the things that spurred me to purchase the package was the promise of an "exclusive" Wilco release (that turned out not to be exclusive in the way I thought) that I effectively paid a multiple of $30 for.

 

I would say it is Record Store Day prices. It may be $10 cheaper on the website, but the SS version in white vinyl was limited to 1,000 I believe and you could do your own cover! That's what you are paying extra for 

Link to post
Share on other sites
31 minutes ago, knotgreen said:


I agree with all of this and you've both put to words a lot of what I've been feeling about most Wilco records post- Star Wars. 

Jeff's proven what a prolific songwriter he is and I just wonder if too much of that writing is done in isolation. That is, by the time the band is involved they're not fleshing out a song anymore but filling in holes. 

 

And while I don't want Wilco to remake YHF or AGIB ad nauseam, I do miss the rewards of obsessive studio-tinkering. Those songs have a "layered" quality that I find absent on a lot of Jeff's recent output. 

 

But FWIW I really like this EP, especially Hot Sun.

Good way to put it. Wrestling songwriting (any aspect of it) from Jeff Tweedy has become more and more difficult as time goes by. But even if the songs are written by him in isolation, it's nice to get either 1. the band involved in the arrangement or 2. a different producer involved with the development. When Jeff handles every task end to end there does seem to be a bit of diminishing returns.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...