Beard Radio mixes up various tracks from “Star Wars” & beyond… by Beard Radio on Mixcloud

Wilco – Star Wars

The alt-country wannabe band Wilco has been around seemingly forever. From A.M. (1995), to the Jay Bennett era of earning respectability on Being There (1996), the Billy Bragg co-recordings of Woody Guthrie tunes on Mermaid Avenue (1998), Summerteeth (1999) and Yankee Hotel Foxtrot (2002), to the post-Bennett and Leroy Bach world of A Ghost Is Born (2004), and the advent of Nels Cline fervent guitar on Sky Blue Sky (2007), Wilco (The Album) (2009), The Whole Love (2011), to the post-00s fin-de-career releases of Mermaid Avenue: The Complete Sessions (2012) and Alpha Mike Foxtrot: Rare Tracks 1994 – 2014 (2014), we all thought Wilco was done. Especially when Jeff Tweedy made and toured the album Tweedy with his son last year.

So, Wilco has been busy recording? Hadn’t heard that they released a new album called Star Wars, featuring 11 new songs, barely clocking in over 30 minutes? Jeff calls it, “a jolt of joy: a fun surprise.” Why? Because it’s available now as a free download (for a limited time) on Wilcoworld, iTunes, Amazon and Google Play and streaming on Spotify, Apple Music and Rdio. CD pressings of Star Wars come out on August 21st, with a special vinyl edition due out in late November. Download a digital copy from Wilcoworld until August 13th, 2015. Weekly pre-order contest drawings begin July 30 and include handwritten lyrics to Star Wars by Jeff Tweedy, tickets to any 2015 headlining show, an undeveloped disposable camera from Wilco and a signed test pressing of Star Wars.

Highlights include the five-plus minute “You Satellite”, which feels like the first segue into a breakaway live jam that could produce uninhibited middle aged white guy dancing at any of these live shows they’ve got lined up this summer. Tweedy croons on the fuzzy punk-inspired blues-riff-ripp-off “More…”

More than I have
More than there is
More than exists

Jeff Tweedy in the press release, “We’ve been feeling very fortunate lately being reminded of how long we’ve been able to do this. We believe one of the primary reasons for our good fortune has been our audiences reaction to our impulse to be heard and our habit of erring on the side of that desire to override financial ambition. Not that we don’t enjoy getting paid. We do. But this is a recommitment to the idea that music is more important to our lives. Art is more worthy of our striving. And fun is more sustaining than cash. It’s not intended to be a comment on the music business, just one band’s wish to give our fans a jolt of joy: a fun surprise. In that spirit we hope you will accept this gift and if not, well, maybe next time.”

No, this time.

Wilco is Jeff Tweedy (Guitars, Vocals), John Stirratt (Bass), Glenn Kotche (Drums), Mikael Jorgensen (Keys), Nels Cline (Guitars), Pat Sansone (Guitars, Keys, et al) on Star Wars (dBpm, July 17th)

Wilco - Star Wars

Wilco – Star Wars (dCbm, 2015)

1. EKG
2. More…
3. Random Name Generator
4. The Joke Explained
5. You Satellite
6. Taste the Ceiling
7. Pickled Ginger
8. Where Do I Begin
9. Cold Slope
10. King Of You
11. Magnetized

Tour Dates

17 Jul 2015 / Chicago, IL / Pitchfork Music Festival
01 Aug 2015 / Bridgeport, CT / Gathering of the Vibes
05 Aug 2015 / Los Angeles, CA / Greek Theatre
06 Aug 2015 / San Francisco, CA / The Independent
07 Aug 2015 / San Francisco, CA / Outside Lands
08 Aug 2015 / Bend, OR / Les Schwab Amphitheater w/ Speedy Ortiz
09 Aug 2015 / Troutdale, OR / McMenamins Edgefield w/ Speedy Ortiz
11 Aug 2015 / Seattle, WA / Marymoor Park w/ Jenny Lewis
12 Aug 2015 / Vancouver, BC / Oprheum Theater w/ Jenny Lewis
14 Aug 2015 / Missoula, MT / Big Sky Brewing Company w/ Vetiver
15 Aug 2015 / Sandpoint, ID / Festival at Sandpoint w/ Vetiver
16 Aug 2015 / Ketchum, ID / River Run Lodge w/ Vetiver
18 Aug 2015 / Salt Lake City, UT / Red Butte Garden w/ Vetiver
19 Sep 2015 / Toronto, ON / Toronto Urban Roots Festival
20 Sep 2015 / Ottawa, ON / CityFolk Festival
26 Sep 2015 / Franklin, TN / Pilgrimage Festival
27 Sep 2015 / Franklin, TN / Pilgrimage Festival