Nonesuch


Well, those of us brave enough to stay home and shun all social interaction were treated to a glimpse of Tweedy-topia this evening with a special ‘semi-secret’ preview of Wilco’s newest effort, Sky Blue Sky. After blistering our index fingers from repeated refresh clicks, the quicktime plugin finally appeared and we were treated to a surprisingly high quality stream of SBS.

Anyone expecting band commentary or ‘extra’ features was instantly disappointed as this was a music-only affair. However, if you had AIM installed you could join other fans in the appropriately named chat room, ‘skybluesky’. As of 2:45 AM EST the player was still available, though there’s been no mention as to how long it’ll stick around other than a vague reference to ‘the wee hours’. [Sorry boys and girls, looks like the player is gone – Sean]

There’s been much speculation as to why the band chose to stream the album so far in advance of it’s release – especially in light of the recent suspension of certain blogs for posting advance tracks – with many guessing they’re simply attempting to preempt the inevitable leaks. Of course, given Jeff Tweedy’s previously stated opinion on music distribution, it’s entirely possible he’d just prefer we get it directly from the source.

On initial listen, the album seems to have a far more mellow direction than the band’s previous efforts. Gone is the experimentalism of ‘Yankee Hotel Foxtrot’ and the…well, fun weirdness of ‘A Ghost is Born’. In their place – for the most part – is a more straight-forward sound with simpler arrangements. Shades of Wings & dare I say, David Bowie are sprinkled throughout and Tweedy’s voice has a slightly rougher, world-weary flavor to it. Standout tracks so far seem to be ‘Hate it Here’, ‘Walken’ & ‘You Are My Face’, though ask me tomorrow and I may give you a different answer.

So now onto the all-important question – what did you think? How many of you stalled your Saturday night party plans for a sneak peak? Feel free to let us know.

Those of us who scour blogs night and day for album advances & leaked mp3s – much like godless bears roam the countryside searching for innocent American Patriot prey – were thrown into a veritable frenzy around noon today as we discovered that several tracks from the upcoming Wilco album had leaked onto the internet.

Alas and alack, almost immediately after they were posted, Shameless Complacency was nowhere to be found. Instead, an error message appeared in it’s place stating the blog had been deleted for violating the WordPress terms of service.

The blog reappeared late this evening, with the following statement from it’s owner, Ke: Shameless Complacency was killed this afternoon. But I revived it this evening. As you may know, I posted links to a certain upcoming album this morning; those links resulted in some very unpleasant business. So I will be posting no more [band name retracted] links, as I rather like my blog un-deleted. I’m sorry for the downtime, and I’m doing my best to ensure that it never happens again. Thanks.

The band are on Nonesuch, a subsidiary of Warner Bros – just like their previous home, Reprise – which could explain the swift crackdown, although Wilco is hardly one of their top-selling artists so such a close watch seems odd. It seems unlikely the band would take such an agressive stance, given Jeff Tweedy’s previous comments on leaks. So we’re all left wondering what exactly happened, and why the reprisal was so extreme. Indietastic has since posted the tracks, and seems to have suffered no such ill will.

One of life’s great mysteries, no doubt.

www.wilcoworld.net
www.myspace.com/wilco

Rich from The Line Of Best Fit posted the new artwork from the forthcoming Wilco release Sky Blue Sky today. I couldn’t find any other sources (including Wilco’s website, their MySpace and their label) confirming this to be official though.

The Nonesuch effort hits store shelves May 15.

Tracklist:
01 Either Way
02 You Are My Face
03 Impossible Germany
04 Sky Blue Sky
05 Side With the Seeds
06 Shake It Off
07 Please Be Patient With Me
08 Hate It Here
09 Leave Me (Like You Found Me)
10 Walken
11 What Light
12 On and On and On

Billboard.com reports: Wilco’s new album, Sky Blue Sky, will arrive May 15 via Nonesuch, frontman Jeff Tweedy said on stage Jan. 17 during a solo show in Nashville. Among the new songs Tweedy has been playing are the title track and “We Can Make It Better.”

As a full band, Wilco has also previewed the tracks “Is That the Thanks I Get,” “Lullaby for Rafters and Dreams,” “On and On and On” and “Walken” in the past year. According to a spokesperson, “Side With the Seeds,” “Either Way” and “Glad It’s Over” are also in consideration.


“I think people may have an idea in their head about what it will sound like, but it’s going to be different than that,” Wilco bassist John Stirratt told Billboard.com in November. “Jeff had a lot of creative fire. And also, the way we recorded was so cool because a lot of the arrangements just grew right there with everybody sitting around. I’m over the moon about it. I think it will be a really beautiful record. It’s a great time to be in Wilco.”

Sky Blue Sky is the follow-up to 2004’s A Ghost Is Born, which has sold 346,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.