Wilco – Being There

Being There

I really didn’t think this kind of band and album existed anymore. Or at least, they sure seem few and far apart. Jeff Tweedy and his cohorts make very catchy pop/rock mixed with country. It brings to mind people like John Lennon, the Replacements, the Kinks, and some really good country/rock bands. If you don’t believe me, just listen to wonderful cuts like “Far, Far Away.” Or the rockin’ “Outasite (outta mind).” There’s even a good-old-fashioned raucous rave-up called “I Got You (at the end of the century).”

Every cut is catchy in its own way. The vocals are excellent, easily conveying the feel of each song. The band does what it has to with everyone chipping in on various instruments. If I controlled radio, there’s at least four “hits” on here. But in today’s radio, it appears they just don’t fit in the Top 40. It’s a shame. We grew up thinking well-rounded groups with good songwriters were the norm. Now, that seems to have changed.

This is a double-CD, with both discs being short. But, it’s priced like a single CD. And it’s well worth the price. If you care about rock and roll played with feel and conviction, this is the kind of record to seek out. An ambitious piece that hits its mark.

This article originally appeared in VG‘s April ’97 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.

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