With Rad rock bands rendered pretty much an extinct species, there are basically three types of bands in the world. Bands that suck...bands that reaaally suck...and bands that I am neutral towards. There are a couple of reasons that third category exists. Usually this band is not really "popular" in the general sense of the word (i.e. nobody buys their albums), but is mainstream enough that everyone at least knows of them. Nobody however, LOVES this band or really argues that they are "AMAZING." Everyone just kinda acknowledges that they're solid or "pretty decent" and has seen them at a festival where they were moderately impressed by them. Since I've never been forced to listen to one of their cds, or gotten in a heated argument over their musical merit, I kinda just ignore the band. I assume that they are definitely not Rad, but tolerable enough that I shouldn't go out of my way to despise them. I mean everyone seems to like them, without going out of their way to sing their praises and convince me I should check them out. This band is kinda like that friend of a friend that you've never had more than a 2 minute convo with at a party. You assume he's probably not the coolest person in the world to hang with, but hey he's nice enough and hasn't openly done anything to piss you off. So for the sake of being civil, you're nice to him and never utter a negative opinion about him. Then one day you are forced to actually hang out with him and realize..holy shit...this dude is a complete fucking tool. Why does he have ANY friends? This neutral friend who turns out to be a total loser is This Week's Band That Sucks Balls: WILCO.
Well right off the bat you can tell that this band is definitely not Rad. I mean this photo wins them the award for "The six last people on earth I would want to have my back in a bar brawl. " What's with the loser with the weirdo combover haircut rocking a aqua blue shirt with a dress vest and jeans? He looks he can't decide if he wants to be a waiter, host of a Bravo fashion show or Beck. Then there's the lead singer on the right with his Denim Dan Canadian tuxedo rocking a mini cowboy hat. Definitely doesn't exactly strike me as a badass. For the most part however, I'm nitpicking. This band has a completely neutral appearance. They're not badass by any stretch, but for the most part their look doesn't completely infuriate me. They don't look like a group of insufferable hipster douchebangs or anything. Which is probably why when I've seen them in magazines or briefly on TV I never thought much of them before. Meh. There's that Wilco band a couple of my friends like. They're probably tolerable, not really worth buying a cd of or anything. Heard they put on a solid rock show. Maybe they have a couple songs worth downloading. This is the part of the story where I reach my breaking point and actually (gulp) check out some of the band's stuff online to see what I like.
Yeah there is nothing solid about this band. They are not "pretty decent." They don't put on a "good live show." No this band is just a Great Dane sized pile of dog shit. This "rock" band is SO...FUCKING..BORING. I would rather listen to James Lipton read me a book on tape about the habitat of the African dung beetle, then throw a Wilco album on the stereo. This band is like Coldplay on Ambien. Why is this even called a "band?" It's just one guy humming and whining quietly while half the other members softly play their instruments at a barel audible level. I swear there is never a point in a Wilco song where all the band members are simultaneously jamming. Occasionally if one of the band members whose instrument isn't featured on the Wilco track wants to remind you he's there he'll tap a maraca or symbol or click some electronic noise in the background. They are that classic shitty modern band whose sound is just 4 minutes of slowly, quietly building up to...nothing. How in the fuck does this band play at any venue that holds more than 20 people? With my tv muted and nobody in the house, they barely hit ambient noise level. Pretty much the only purpose this band could ever serve would be to provide the soundtrack to a Wes Anderson directed romantic comedy about a love triangle involving Jason Schwartzman, Zooey Deschanel and Ryan Gossling.
(Sidenote. If Norah Jones covers one of your songs...your rock band officially resides in SnoozeVille, USA: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvkxPdnsSck&feature=related)
To dig deeper into the roots of the most boring group of douchebags ever, lets see how this band was formed courtesy of Wiki.
"Wilco was formed after the breakup of the popular Alt-country band Uncle Tupelo"
Ok as usual the band is associated with some sort of made up genre of music that sucks dick. WTF is "Alt-Country"..? I assume one guy strummed steel guitar and played harmonica while some singer screeched and somebody in the background tapped a cymbal. So who inspired this band's rocking sound..?
"Wilco draws influence primarily from music created between 1966 and 1974. John Cale's "Paris 1919" was credited by the band as providing a musical parallel."
WTF? So definitely only music from that random eight year period. Anything from 1965 or 1975..Wilco wasn't really feeling. Also of course some random ass album by a founding member of noise rock pioneers Velvet Underground is credited as "providing a musical parallel." Everyone who credits the Velvet Underground as an inspiration can never really explain in plain English why their music is so inspiring. Lets give Wilco a shot:
"It was eye-opening that I wasn't the only one who felt these worlds had a lot in common...That experimentation and avant-garde theory wasn't directly opposed to beauty. Y'know?"
No actually I don't know. That might as well have been fucking Japanese. Also I couldn't hear most of what you were saying over the sound of you loudly snorting your own fart. Can we get a behind the scenes view of the creative process behind a Wilco song?
"The lyrical structure of Wilco's songs was dictated by classic literature and cadavre exquis - an exercise where band members take turns typing lines on a typewriter, but are only allowed to see the previous written line."
Remember when the structure of a rock song was dictated by an exercise where band members take turns blowing lines off the ass of a stripper? Yeah..that was cool.
Anyways, Wilco totally sucks balls and it seriously hurts my brain to think about their shittastic alt-country snooze rock any longer. So lets move on to discussing something way cooler..aka tomorrow, which may be the Raddest day of the year. St. Patrick's day...combined with first day of the NCAA tourney. Overload of awesomeness and double the reason to be hammered by 2 pm. Celebrate accordingly. If you're looking to get fired up for a day of slamming whiskey and Guinness, sports gambling, and general rioting don't throw on any Wilco. Instead throw on this brand new Rad jam courtesy of the Dropkick Murphys. You have my word that after listening to this you'll be chugging car bombs, breaking beer bottles and pissing in the streets almost instantaneously. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D7g3RuoreRc