Tag Archives: dBpm

New Jeff Tweedy: Gwendolyn

Video: Jeff Tweedy – “Gwendolyn”

Jeff Tweedy "Gwendolyn" (Official Music Video)

Directed by James Fleischel. From Love Is The King, out October 23 on dBpm. Vinyl/CD due January 15.

Featuring the mouths and noses of Fred Armisen, Courtney Barnett, Elvis Costello, Jeff Garlin, Tavi Gevinson, Jon Hamm, Robyn Hitchcock, John Hodgman, Yuka C Honda, Abbi Jacobson, Norah Jones, Gaelynn Lea, Scott McCaughey, Seth Meyers, Nnamdï, Nick Offerman, Molly Sarlé, Alexandra Sauser-Monnig, Jay Som, Alex Winter, Sammy Tweedy, Spencer Tweedy and Jeff Tweedy.

Who knows what’s going on underneath those masks? There could be some very attractive people hidden under there. Or maybe not.

If this new video proves anything, it’s that one’s nose and mouth drastically affect your appearance. It also proves that Tweedy knows a lot of famous people!

Continue reading New Jeff Tweedy: Gwendolyn

New Wilco video: Before Us

Video: Wilco – “Before Us”

Wilco "Before Us" (Ode to Joy session)

Directed by Zoran Orlic. From Ode to Joy, out now on dBpm.

I saw Wilco in concert a few weeks ago and they still put on a great show. I am a solid member of the old school Wilco fan camp who believes they made their best stuff in their first ten years of existence, but I’m not such a hater as to dismiss everything they’ve done since Jay Bennett was given the boot.

I’ll admit that the last album I really loved all the way through was Wilco (The Album), but that was also--perhaps not coincidentally--the last Wilco album I purchased in a physical format. I can accept the possibility that I just haven’t dedicated the time to fully appreciate the four studio albums they released since then.

My overall impression of their recent releases is that they each have a few songs I like, a few songs I don’t, and a bunch of songs I immediately forget. That’s not so bad. They’ve been doing this a long time. What do you expect?

“Before Us” falls into the latter category. It’s pretty but boring. Pleasant but…is that it?

While I realize it would be cost prohibitive for a band that pays for and releases its own recordings, at this point in their lifespan it might be interesting for them to get out of the Loft, where they’ve recorded everything since 2007’s Sky Blue Sky, and work with an outside producer. For all the current lineup’s artrock bonafides, when’s the last time they did anything that surprised you? I’m sure the Loft is super comfortable, but maybe Tweedy needs somebody to kick his ass a little. Shake things up.

Or maybe not. I’m happy they continue to tour and release new music, and if they’ve found the formula that allows them to do this ad infinitum then good for them. Nothing they’ve released this decade is going to make my desert island list, but guess what: I’m not moving to a desert island anytime soon.

Streaming has rendered minimalism and careful curation obsolete. There was a time when people would sell back used CDs that they didn’t think they needed anymore, so that they could afford to buy new stuff. You didn’t want embarrassing shit clogging up your shelves, bringing down the legitimacy of your collection. There’s no need for that anymore.

Keep releasing music and I’ll keep listening. At least a few times before I go back to Being There.

Wilco: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Wilco video: Everyone Hides

Video: Wilco – “Everyone Hides”

Wilco "Everyone Hides" (Official Video)

Directed by Jamie Fleischel. From Ode to Joy, due October 4, 2019 via dBpm.

Boy, as if I needed another reminder how much I miss living in Chicago…

In Wilco’s new video the band runs around town visiting all the best spots including Laurie’s Planet of Sound, the Music Box, and Wrigley Field. There are several Wilco easter eggs like Pat Sansone catching a matinee of the Peter Sellers film “Being There” and Glenn Kotche sneaking around Marina City.

The song is good too. Similar in spirit to Yankee Hotel Foxtrot‘s “Kamera,” it even echoes the themes of that song (“Which lies I have been hiding” vs. “If you’re selling yourself on a tale…”)

But I don’t know about Tweedy’s whispery vocals. I wish he’d just sing in his regular voice more. Still though, I’m happy Wilco is making new music and I’m looking forward to seeing them on this upcoming tour.

Wilco: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Jeff Tweedy video: Family Ghost

Video: Jeff Tweedy – “Family Ghost”

Jeff Tweedy "Family Ghost" (Official Video)

From WARMER, due April 13 on dBpm.

I can appreciate any song that starts out declaring “I’m a dope.” That is a sentiment I can get behind. Tweedy goes on to describe how it feels to be a liberal middle aged white guy in today’s environment.

I’m a dope
Blowing smoke at the TV screen
Lost all hope
Based on the things I’ve seen
I’m a man content
For the sake of argument
Underneath each added straw
Oh, I feel so American

Yup.

I drove across the country with my family for spring break this year, and one of the lessons from that trip is: it’s a big country. Really big. And most of it is empty. Like, not even cows. Just fields and tumbleweeds and dirt and mesas and mountains and no people for miles. Wild.

It’s a weird time to be American. Feels like there’s a lot dividing us from each other. What does it even mean to be American? Will we ever share a common reality, or will we continue to live in our own separate bubbles? I don’t see how that’s ever going to change, so it’s hard to have any hope for any kind of united identity. Whatever that means.

I guess it’s something we’ve been grappling with since before we were even an independent nation. Loyalists and patriots and black folks and indigenous people… Was there ever a true American identity? Probably not.

Regardless, this is a lame video.

For something way cooler, check out the two songs he taped for Acoustic Asheville, another new one from Warmer, plus an old classic. Watch below…

Jeff Tweedy: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

Continue reading New Jeff Tweedy video: Family Ghost

New Jeff Tweedy video: I Know What It’s Like

Video: Jeff Tweedy – “I Know What It’s Like”

Jeff Tweedy "I Know What It's Like" (Official Video)

Directed by Mark Greenberg. From WARM, out now on dBpm Records.

I’m about 100 pages into Tweedy’s memoir, Let’s Go (So We Can Get Back), and so far it’s really enjoyable. One of my favorite things about it so far is the antipathy he retains toward his classmates from high school. We all know we’re supposed to let that shit go by the time we’re grown up, but it’s comforting to know there are other people out there who continue to feel “alienated and irrationally repulsed by most of my classmates.”

When he bumped into a woman from his high school who told him she was sad he wouldn’t be attending their twentieth reunion, he writes, “I needed to catch up with her like I needed to sit down with Madonna and reminisce about all the times I watched the ‘Lucky Star’ video on MTV as a teen.”

I know what that’s like.

I wish Tweedy would put more of this kind of conversational humor into his lyrics. His songs used to be funnier…at least occasionally. I love sad sack dad rock as much as anybody (it’s my jam), but I appreciate getting a chance to smirk or even guffaw once in a while to moderate the tears in my beers. But it’s okay. Something else is taking shape, I guess.

Jeff Tweedy: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.

New Jeff Tweedy video: Some Birds

Video: Jeff Tweedy – “Some Birds”

Jeff Tweedy "Some Birds" (Official Video)

Directed by Seth Henrikson. From Warm, due November 20.

Jeff Tweedy knows his audience. After all, he was once one of us. His only job outside of being in a band was as a record store clerk, so he understands well the things that set us off. The lead-off video for his upcoming solo album is a quick bit of catnip for folks like us. It starts with a norm-core version of Tweedy--replete in polo shirt, sweater and “haircut”--walking in to what we think is just a quick trim and probably neck clean-up. Instead, it’s the antithesis to “Almost Cut My Hair,” a freak flag anthem dating back more than 45 years.

What’s more, norrm-o Tweedy is serenaded by real Tweedy who uses the occasion to show off all of the double-neck guitars he has…and we don’t. It’s exactly what I would do in his shoes, and so would you.

The song itself is catchy enough. It’s a cool little mid-tempo cruiser punctuated with some 12-string almost-solos. Again, totally my thing.

According to liner notes written by George Saunders and published by The New Yorker, “”Jeff told me once that what he’s trying to communicate to his listener is, ‘You’re O.K. You’re not alone. I’m singing to you, but I also hear you.'”

Well, we hear you too. And we reply with a resounding, “One of us! One of us! One of us!”

Jeff Tweedy: web, twitter, amazon, apple, spotify, wiki.