HESO Magazine

Photography, Music, Film, Hitchhiking, Craft Beer – Cultural Pugilist

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From ocean to table - Wild Alaskan Silver Salmon

From Ocean to Table – Wild Alaskan Silver Salmon

Fish Tacos make me happy. Halibut, Cod, Monkfish, Blowfish, whatever you got. Bring it. But what about Salmon?

Well-known for its high protein, high omega-3 fatty acids, and high vitamin D content, like most seafood salmon is becoming an increasingly popular food, especially in places that don’t traditionally have access to oceans-going fish. In order to service this demand, an increase in farmed salmon has spread across the globe. 99% of all Atlantic salmon commercially available are farmed (while more than 80% of Pacific salmon is harvested from the wild). While harvesting wild salmon (wild anything really) is more beneficial in terms of nutrient content, sustainable fisheries practices are necessary to maintain a healthy and vibrant population. With the advent of damming rivers and mining activities, logging, et al, the situation for wild salmon migrations has turned political. On the one hand there are many native populations that still depend on salmon for a large part of their diet and economic livelihood, not to mention their millennia-old cultural importance. And on the other hand there are large commercial interests jockeying for access to energy sources, logging rights, mineral deposits, and hegemony over the fish farming industry itself. Who knew a large majority of the world’s salmon supply was farmed in Chile? Which begs multiple questions: 1) is there enough wild salmon to go around and 2) is the proliferation of farmed salmon doing more damage than good in harming the environment, the fish, and we, the consumers, who just want a damn taco?

The NOAA fisheries stat sheet states that “Coho salmon on the west coast of the United States have experienced dramatic declines in abundance during the past several decades as a result of human-induced and natural factors. Water storage, withdrawal, conveyance, and diversions for agriculture, flood control, domestic, and hydropower purposes have greatly reduced or eliminated historically accessible habitat. Physical features of dams, such as turbines and sluiceways, have resulted in increased mortality of both adults and juvenile salmonids.”

The key characteristic of salmon is adaptability. What else would you expect from an anadromous fish? Being born in fresh water river beds, migrating to the ocean to feed, then returning, often to the exact place of their own birth to spawn, and then unceremoniously dying in a heap of stinking fish flesh. What an epic life. Yet one that the farmed variety never gets to experience. It does not hunt, as it is fed fish pellets (a ratio of 1.5 – 8 kilograms of wild fish are needed to produce one kilogram of farmed salmon) and never gets to expire in spawning ecstasy yet rather mills about in its open net pens, polluting the ocean floor and proliferating sea lice.

From Ocean to Table - Wild Alaskan Silver Salmon

(Map courtesy of NOAA)

While the majority of coho salmon seem to inhabit the waters surrounding Alaska, they range throughout the Pacific from Japan and eastern Russian, and south all the way to Monterey Bay, California. As baby fry, coho feed frantically on aquatic insects and plankton, as well as cannibalizing their own the eggs deposited by adult spawning salmon. They grow peacefully in the pooling river beds, ponds and lakes, eating and defending their turf from their cousin fish, trout and char. But there is simply not enough food present in fresh water for their growth. So they head out to sea to gorge on all sorts of fish and squid. Yet even as technologically savvy as modern fishery sciences are we know little about the ocean migrations of coho salmon. Tagging has shown that maturing Southeast Alaska coho move northward throughout the spring and congregate in the central Gulf of Alaska in June–probably one final feeding frenzy–until at some point setting off toward shore and reaching their stream of origin. Once the return home begins they never eat again, eventually even dissolving their own stomachs to make room for eggs and sperm. Now that is dedication.

After reentering fresh water the dehydrated salmon change appearance and lose their delicious flavor as the salt leeches from their bodies. Weakened by the long journey and fight to spawn they, and their fresh laid patch of roe are easy pickings for bears, the ecosystem engineers of the forest. It is the bears unique fishing ability that allows them to rely on salmon as a major food source. Once caught the bears transport the fish to the forest where the remains become nutrients for the soil, trees, and plants. The salmon leftovers are scavenged by birds and other animals and eventually feed the forest floor and release nitrogen as they decompose, also feeding the trees. And the cycle continues. Unless you’re a Norwegian farmed salmon. Then it is abruptly stopped.

The Audubon Society reports that wetlands that connect lakes and rivers leading from forests to the open sea are crucial to maintaining a healthy salmon population. Over the last 200 years, the continental United States have lost at least half of all its wetlands. NOAA goes on to say that “Washington and Oregon’s wetlands have been estimated to have been diminished by one third, while it is estimated that California has experienced a 91 percent loss of its wetland habitat.” Human action in wild habitats, once a part of the natural cycle of life, has become an intrusive, destructive and catastrophic to the general welfare of the entire ecosystem. So sayonara wild salmon. Hello farmed fish. Hope you’re happy, people in Kansas, yes now you too can eat salmon.

While farming fish may be an exploding market of potential revenue for investors the larger item at stake here is not just one fish but the entire Pacific ocean coastal ecosystem. There must be balance or we will wipe out a keystone species. That will most likely have devastating effects on a wide range of issues we have no idea the depth of. Let the rivers flow and the wetlands return and their will be fish, wild and healthy, enough for us all who live within reach. Those living in landlocked regions can eat what is available, as their ancestors once did. Keep Salmon wild. And properly labeled. And now, please enjoy what I caught, cleaned, cooked and ate with a deliciously home-brewed double IPA last night.

From Ocean to Table – Wild Alaskan Silver Salmon

Monkfish is the New Lobster

Monkfish is the New Lobster

Seafood is the way to go for any and all tacos if you ask me. BBQ Prawns, Baja-style Cod, Roasted Sea Bream, Halibut ceviche, Tempura Blowfish, it’s all good. So that’s what I’ve been doing, testing the waters. The marinade I use goes well with any of the above, but especially Monkfish.

Monkfish is the New Lobster

Monkfish is the New Lobster

Or actually, it has been for a while, but you didn’t know about it. Why? Because it’s ugly as sin! Look at that beast!

When it can be had, Monkfish it’s my fish of choice because near invertebrate is perfect for roasting, braising or pan-frying. Monkfish most likely gets its name from it being an ugly sucker, whose body mass collapses out of water and takes on the characteristics of a slug once taken from its pressure friendly ocean climes. It has one long vertebrae running the length of it eel-like body, with thick spinal offshoots branching out transversely along the way, so once cleaned, cut up and cooked there are no pin bones to be hassled with, making for a quick transition from grill to plate to mouth. Although hard to clean, slippery to handle and the innards tend to stink up your place if not immediately disposed of, the meat has a texture akin to lobster and is a dream to cook and especially to eat. If you can get your hands on the liver you can sell it on the Japanese Black Market and finance your kid’s college education. Otherwise, what Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seawatch says about the tasty monster is good news for North Americans:

Monkfish is the New Lobster

BBQ’d Monkfish in lime chili sauce

Monkfish was once considered overfished. Thanks to improved management, stocks have increased recently to a more sustainable level. Monkfish is caught with bottom trawls or bottom gill nets. Because both methods create bycatch, monkfish is a “Good Alternative” rather than a “Best Choice.” Monkfish is found from the Canadian Maritimes to Cape Hatteras, but this recommendation is for the U.S. fishery only.

  • Juice of 5-10 Limes
  • Garlic Bulb
  • Jalapeños/Serranos/Habaneros/Pasillas
  • Seasalt

After roasting garlic (allow to cool and squeeze out into a paste) and jalapeños (remove skin, seeds and stem and dice) combine the above ingredients and blend until smooth. Marinade chunked monkfish for 10-20 minutes (more than this and you might as well eat it as ceviche), throw on a hot griddle and grill for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat and serve immediately on warmed corn tortillas with fresh made salsa picada and cilantro. Add guacamole. Beer. Mix in stomach. Repeat.

Olé Mole

Olé Mole

Mole (pronounced Mo-lay, gringo) is generally associated with two places in Mexico: Oaxaca and Puebla. Mole Poblano, the national dish of Mexico from Puebla is often incorrectly associated with Aztec cuisine. But the savory brown, chocolate-laden sauce that is infamous for its apocryphal origin story of being thrown together at the last minute and served over turkey to a surprise guest, is a more modern invention. As my ex-girlfriend Maria (not you Maria, the other Maria…) used to say, “Abraza la morena, gringo…Embrace the brown, whiteboy.” I never knew if she was talking about the food or her, so I did both. To more or less great failure. She may be gone today, but I still have Mole and I finally think I’ve struck upon a recipe that works.

Olé Mole

I am a fiend for the spicy, salty, savory, smokey, Picante of Jalapeños, Habaneros, Cascabeles, Serranos, Chilhuacle Negros, Guajillos, and especially the manly yet delicate, earthy yet crisp flavor of the precious Poblano.

So it was with much salivating of chops and rubbing of hands like many a cartoon wolf during that two-hour Amtrak ride from L.A.’s Union Station (a few days in from Hong Kong), that I exited the train station in Oceanside (North County S.D.) to be picked up in my uncle’s 1969 Volkswagon Beetle, blue as the sea at dawn, and told him to stop at the first market we passed. Of course it was some organo-hippy granola-fest mini-market stacked to the ceiling with 22 dollar bottles of Guano Extract Shampoo, Chia-drenched Kombu Hallucinogenics and Non-GMO soybean-based condoms for aisles in all directions.

It was the bright reds and luscious greens of the produce which drew me in first. There after my long journey westward, where I selected 10 poblanos, 15 limes, 20 jalapeños, 4 bunches of cilantro, 2 red onions and a vine of tomatoes, I came to know peace. Shaking now from excitement, I looked down and felt as if I’d been hit by a Vegetable Oil Converted Volvo. Tomatillos! In three years living in the lap of leeks the size of small children, the Okinawan dildo-gone-wrong Goya and the greatest sweet potatoes ever (Praise be to Imo), I’d completely forgotten the little green beauties even existed. Slapping myself, and nearly tumbling over a mountain of melon-sized mangoes, I quickly filled my basket and limped away toward the cheese, tortillas and beer. 20 minutes and one very pissed off uncle later, I emerged in a fugued-out trance of recipe preparation strategies and we cruised the Coast Highway south to Encinitas, where lay the kitchen in which I would hatch my plans of salsa picada and mole poblano, (among other kinds of) world domination.


In your big American oven, roast the peppers, all of them, naked on broil (450°F/230°C), carefully watching and turning them to a insure uniform char. Go ahead and throw in the garlic at the same time, wrapped in foil and well-oiled, along with the dehusked tomatillos, though be wary of the differing cooking times.

After roasting (anywhere from 5-20 minutes) toss your peppers into a bowl, cover with a damp dishtowel for 5- 10 minutes to allow the skin to separate and set aside. Before peeling, destemming and deseeding your chiles, and while you wait for the post-roast steam-a-thon to finish, go get a beer. May I suggest some kind of Saison (a bit more European style), or the HUB Lager?

Though roasting tomatillos is similar to roasting tomatoes, tomatillos are not unripe “little tomatoes” as the name suggests, they are fruits and actually grow in a papery husk which should be peeled before preparation. They are generally of a firmer consistency, have less water and are much more tart than you might expect. This is the prime reason they remain the main ingredient in salsas verdes, salsas crudas and my own roasted picadas as tart mixes very well with heat. Like all my exes and me.

Now finely chop your fatty red onion, a vine-ripened tomato and go ahead and slice a lime up just to have ready. Here’s the fun part: do you want a salsa cruda with its fresh raw feel or a more smooth and traditional salsa verde? The only difference is merely a finely diced former, or a pureed latter. I prefer the crisp and cool texture of the raw cut, the picturesque juxtaposition of your garden’s range of colors, the saltiness of the tortilla chip balanced perfectly with the sour of the tomatillo, the acid of the lime, the heat of the jalapeño, the warmth of the garlic and all of it rounded out nicely by the fortitude of the patriarchal poblano. So for me, it’s la cruda. Pero la verde es muy rico tambien.

I haven’t talked about Cilantro yet. Coriander, Dhania, Ketumbar, Chinese Parsley, Kothamir, Llaksa, however you say it, it’s everywhere. In my 10 or so years preparing Mexican and Asian foods, I’ve found that there are two camps of people: those who love cilantro and those who don’t. Those who don’t are equally as stubborn in their opinions as those who do, though luckily those who do love the fresh citrusy twang of the embattled herb far outnumber any haters. And you haters, would it please you to know that through no fault of your own, but rather due to an enzyme which alters the flavor due to a genetic disposition, you cannot help but hate the plant? Doesn’t that make you feel bad- hating a plant? So, if this is true, it seems your genes just aren’t good enough to like it. You Are Deficient. As a genetically healthy person who should produce cilantro-eating offspring, it remains mandatory for my food, as- in the proper dosage- it is good in almost anything. Just ask Ethiopia!

Cilantro should be shredded or ripped by hand and then ground in a mortar as opposed to using a knife, the steel of which undoubtedly alters its natural flavor. If it were me I wouldn’t even bother making this gorgeous yet manly salsa without cilantro. Like auto-eroticism without the self-flagellation…just not worth it. Now on to the Mole.

Mole Poblano

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
  • 2 tablespoons ground Pasilla chili powder
  • 1 cup cooked black beans
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup Mirepoix
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves, loosely packed
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1.5 oz. Mexican Chocolate
  • S & P


In a small skillet, toast the cumin seeds, oregano, sesame seeds, and chili powder, stirring constantly for three minutes (or until golden), and then blend, or crush in a mortar with pestle for a more authentically tiring feel. Add the beans, tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce, Mirepoix, honey, cilantro, lime, butter, and salt and pepper to taste. Puree until smooth and liquidy brown. Transfer the mole to a saucepan and slow heat for as long as you can stand it. Make sure to stir regularly so as not to scorch the bottom. Serve any number of ways including (but not limited to): dip, topping on seafood, rice, base sauce for Pizza. That or just stand around with Day of the Dead Craft Beer and lick it off your fingers. We will be making fish tacos. Because even though it may be tradition to serve it over fowl, breaking tradition, if done deliciously, can be a wonderful thing.

Finish making the tacos by warming up your tortilla of choice, a bit of guacamole on the bottom for stability, place your protein (monkfish perhaps?) down next, plenty of mole on top, top with salsa cruda, crema and cilantro.

Friends of Laphroaig

Friends of Laphroaig

2015 is Laphroaig’s double centenary year and The Friends of Laphroaig 21st year as well. Celebrating the 200th year of making exceptional Scotch Whisky with a whole host of events and special releases. At the request of the Friends of Laphroaig there is one off bottling of the famous 15 year old and the permanent reminder in the form of a huge dry stone Cairn / Kiln near the water source – The Kibride Stream. There’s the new tasting room and in September there we will be the official party during Laphroaig Live.

Friends of Laphroaig

Friends of Laphroaig

What exactly is a Friend of Laphroaig? Having children causes one to get back to their roots, and as I’m Scottish therefore Whisky flows through my veins, so thankfully the one clear, sober decision I made was to join the Friends of Laphroaig and drink Real Whisky like it was meant to be drunk: On The Peat. As of November 2008 I’ve been a Friend.

From the deed:

“As a condition of this award, we agree to pay a yearly ground rent in the sum of one dram of Laphroaig, to be claimed in person at the distillery.

Upon the Leaseholder’s arrival at Laphroaig we undertake to provide a map, with adequate directions for locating the PLOT, and suitable protective clothing against Islay’s rugged weather and eccentric wildlife.

The LEASEHOLDERS’ Cupboard will contain at all times essential equipment, including: For ascertaining the boundaries of the plot, one tape measure; a pair of wellingtons, size 12, approximately one foot in length. For the journey to the plot, protective headgear against low-flying GEESE; a thick overcoat to repel the inclement Scottish mist; a lifebelt and anchor to safeguard against being blown out to sea; one ball of string for securing trouser legs from inquisitive stoats; and a towel for the Leaseholder to dry-off in the event of unwelcome attention from affectionate otters.”

To get your own you need a bottle and a code. Don’t wait, let’s dram it up like real Men Of The Sea.

Taste Testing Chainbreaker White IPA

Taste Testing Chainbreaker White IPA

I had the opportunity to taste test White IPA A versus White IPA B a few years ago when in Portland’s Pearl District I happened across the Deschutes Brew Pub. It wasn’t any kind of special event that I was specifically invited to, but rather Deschutes offers tasters of their Beers To Come to the public. It’s a great program that let’s the average Bearded Joe Craft Beer Drinker feel like they know what they are talking about when they drink a beer. I’m pretty sure I wrote something about "the fruity frothy white reminds me of a shaken not stirred Welch’s white grapejuice" kind of ignorant bullshit.

But the IPA, Wheat at a medium ABV of 5.6% packs just enough IBUs at 55 to please multiple camps of beer drinkers–enough to satisfy the hardcore heavy IPA thrashers who wake up to a smoothie of Ninkasi Tricerahops and Lagunitas Hop Stoopid, as well as the lighter Belgian Wit loving orange and coriander flavor savorers. Brewed with pilsner malt and both malted and unmalted wheat, Chainbreaker White IPA has enough citrusy IPA guts from Bravo, Cascade and Centennial hops that meld with the esters of Belgian yeast to make it the best of both worlds. This is the beer Blue Moon dreams it could have been at night.

Best Bloody Mary Ever

Best Bloody Mary Ever

Best Bloody Mary Ever

Best Bloody Mary Ever

Add the ice, Season the glass, then pour for the win…

Just as the smart traveler does not fly to Santorini for only one day, the smart drinker realizes that one cannot have just one Bloody Mary — if only for the fact that it takes at least one of these finely crafted, blue collar beauties to merely season the glass (an important point I will come back to) — but rather must make proper arrangements in advance in order to insure the best Bloody Mary drinking experience possible. In order to write this, I am, at this very moment, under the influence of more than a few fingers of spicy vodka goodness. Which begs the question: what makes a good B.M.? Bloody Mary mix? Is it merely the tender pressings of tart tomatoes or rather the clear winter’s chill of crisp Russian spirits? After making more than 1000 of these vitamin C packed concoctions, rest assured it is more than just the aforementioned juice of the tomato fruit and medium-grade Russian intoxicant, that makes the Blood Mary the drink of choice for the mornings of forever after. So let’s get started:

The History:

It was sometime last century, likely in between world wars, in the few years of celebration when Europe was recovering from the war to end all wars and preparing for the deadliest conflict in human history, that the drink which was created to deal with hangovers was probably mixed up for the first time in Paris. Though some argue that it was first thought up and imbibed in New York around the 30s, in order, most likely, to deal with the major pain in the ass the that was the great depression. Wherever tomato juice was first mixed with vodka (or gin as was a common alternative) is not so important as the evolution of the drink, which has morphed from two simple ingredients to a complex and lively mixture that is both refreshing and uplifting, especially on Sunday mornings during brunch out with friends, or for the more skilled party-goer, for late Saturday night in preparation for the inevitable dehydration and loss of vitamins minerals caused by drinking alcohol. Whichever you may be, in order to properly enjoy the Bloody Mary to its full potential requires a bit more than elementary skill, but with a bit of practice and not much cash, anyone can make a damn good one for someone you love to love in the morning.

Seasoning the Glass:

Best Bloody Mary Ever

From dark to translucent the heart of the mix …

It’s almost shocking how much the drink is geared toward getting you going in the morning. Beyond the obvious tomato juice, the usual accoutrements could range from olives and celery, a pirate’s sword skewer of olives, pickles, or those mini Gibson onions. These days the add-ons are over-the-top excessive — bacon, beef sliders, spare ribs. If I wanted food, I would order your farmer’s plate, but what I want is a drink to cure all the wrong things I did last night. Key in the drink is citrus, the lemon and the lime. Which, after putting the ice to the brim, but before adding a couple jiggers of vodka, it becomes necessary to season the glass. This means adding pepper, celery salt, (soy sauce, horseradish, wasabi, kimchi, various chiles, et al are viable alternatives), anchovies, a nice squeeze of citrus and then the wedge, hot sauce, and Worcestershire sauce. The order is important, in that you want a nicely spread uniformity of seasoning. This should make the bottom of the glass appear as if it’s been left out in the rain and tipped over in a mudslide, but not to worry, we have vodka to the rescue. I infused my vodka with a lot of habanero peppers and some fresh mango to sweeten the wrath of the little orange chile. It didn’t do much to tame the heat, but it sure does taste great.

The point of this is to get the ice melting a bit and mix the seemingly disparate elements before adding the tomato juice. Another bonus being that the glass is basically ready to go for round two, with only a modicum of seasoning needed during the next mix up. The importance of this cannot be overstated. Proper seasoning makes for a damn near perfect Bloody Mary experience, no matter what blueprint you swear by. If you were wondering, mine is below.


Bloody Mary recipe courtesy of the HESO Magazine School of Bartending:

  • 2 oz. (60 ml) habanero/mango infused vodka in a Highball glass filled with (preferably crushed) ice.
  • 1 dash ground black pepper
  • 2-4 dashes celery salt
  • 2-4 dashes of Worcestershire sauce
  • Mashed up Anchovy
  • 1/4 juice of lemon or lime
  • Fill glass with tomato juice

While most home bartenders will be mixing in-glass, if one should have a proper bartender’s cocktail shaker then the mixture may be shaken vigorously, as desired. But above all, these should be consumed in twos and threes over brunch with an unbending spirit of togetherness as you crash blood red glasses toward a brighter day.

Sleater-Kinney - No Cities to Love

Sleater-Kinney – No Cities To Love

The Beard – EP 109 – Sleater-Kinney by Beard Radio on Mixcloud

Sleater-Kinney – No Cities To Love

Sleater-Kinney - No Cities to Love

Sleater-Kinney – No Cities to Love – Deluxe Edition Cover

Publishing this feels like something that is so hard to do for so many reasons. The album came out 6 months ago. Every major site has already reviewed it. It’s old news. Who gives a shit what I say? Etc. The truth is it has taken me six months to think of anything to say. Why? Because this album, like all of their other albums, hits so hard it leaves one speechless. There are no words to express the way these ladies get together and make music. It’s best to hear it and then experience whatever it is that comes. But do yourself a favor — hear it in the appropriate fashion: live in concert. Or if you can’t make a show, get the vinyl and some great headphones. Or with friends and family. Only listen to my radio show if you are driving somewhere, or at worse you’re on a train. Movement is key. Wind. Water. Better yet, here’s some stuff the ladies themselves have to say about the first album out in a decade.

“Creativity is about where you want your blood to flow, because in order to do something meaningful and powerful there has to be life inside of it,” says Brownstein. “Sleater-Kinney isn’t something you can do half-assed or half-heartedly. We have to really want it. This band requires a certain desperation, a direness. We have to be willing to push because the entity that is this band will push right back.”

“The core of this record is our relationship to each other, to the music, and how all of us still felt strongly enough about those to sweat it out in the basement and to try and reinvent our band,” says Tucker.

Wilco - Star Wars

Wilco – Star Wars

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

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