Posts Tagged ‘The Whole Love’

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There’s a whole lot to love about Wilco’sThe Whole Love”. It’s a career-spanning set of songs that appeared in the fall of 2011. Start with “Art of Almost” (you should be starting with this song, unless you have the album on shuffle.) The opening cut is the group’s most ambitious, confrontational piece since the Jim O’Rourke days. Plus, there’s the infectious “I Might,” the lovely, shuffling title track—all great. If The Whole Love has a weakness, it’s that the album spends so much time exploring the stylistic terrain of Wilco’s career to date that it never quite establishes an identity of its own. Plus, at 55 minutes and some change, Whole Love sags in its latter half. But man, “Art of Almost.” What a song

Has Wilco ever sequenced as perfect a coupling as “Art of Almost,” the band’s theme song, and the driving organ-pop number “I Might”? Those are 11 minutes to get lost in the music. The album ends with the 12-minute anti-epic “One Sunday Morning,” containing some of Jeff Tweedy’s best lyrics. You have to find your own meaning, but “One Sunday” seems inspired by a troubled father-son relationship, with Tweedy’s somber delivery over lovely piano accompaniment eventually leading to an understated jam that follows the tone of the proceedings. The album’s a little soft in the middle, but it includes a song that predicted Diamond Rugs (“Standing O”) and one (“Black Moon”) that cuts through Townes Van Zandt’s backyard on the way to the symphony.

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