I remember reading somewhere around the time that Yankee Foxtrot Hotel came out, that Wilco were the American Radiohead. I’ll admit, that album was experimental for Wilco, but it didn’t compare to the amount of experimentation that Radiohead had dabbled into around the time of Kid A and Amnesiac. Well, The Whole Love is opening up with a track entitled “The Art of Almost,” a 7 minute track in which they are invariably pushing the envelope and could now possibly garner the Radiohead comparison.
“Dawned On Me” is typical feel-good, Wilco pop-rock.
For fans of the last two albums, this is a bit of a departure. It feels more like “Yankee” while still staying unique and quite brilliant. I love that these guys mix up their sound every album while still sounding like themselves. I remember seeing these guys in concert and people cheering relentlessly for their earlier stuff while seemingly dismissing the Sky Blue Sky tracks and the new material. This kind of irks me as a Wilco fan because I’m wide open and always excited to see what these guys are going to do next.
If you’re not a huge fan of “Yankee,” don’t be dismayed. There’s still some pretty, alt-country gems on the record like “Open Mind” and “Rising Red Lung” as well as rockers like “Whole Love,” “Capitol City” and “Dawned on Me.”
I love how “free” this album feels now that Wilco are independently releasing their own material. You know you’re answering to nobody when you close an album with a 12 minute folk song. I love you Wilco.
Highlights: “Dawned On Me” “Open Mind”