Another 4 star album by Wilco…. yawn. Wilco has build such a reputation of greatness that the only thing they could do to surprise their fans is to put out a bad record. “Star Wars” isn’t that bad record. While it isn’t the glistening gem that 2011’s “The Whole Love” was, it is still a great rock record.
America’s best living band lets the guitars loose a little more this time around. The “Kicking Television”-esque “Pickled Ginger” is a prime example. The crystal clear guitar playing on “The Whole Love” is replaced by a dirty and sloppy distortion here. Keep in mind it is very intentionally sloppy sounding. The catchy “Random Name Generator” is another guitar rager as is “More…” for the most part. Tweedy and co. still have their slower tunes mixed in like “You Satellite” and the excellent closer “Magnetized.” The final track on the record is trademark Tweedy, excellent lyrics with just enough instrumentation to carry the song. After the abrasive and shocking instrumental opener “EKG” clocking in at just over a minute (but is still somehow great) “Magnetized” just makes tons of sense at the end of the album and closes it out perfectly.
To summarize: If Wilco puts out a record you should buy it. They continue to prove their greatness even with the absence of radio play for the most part. They still are noteworthy on every level, they simply make really good and relevant records. You can pick some being slightly better than others but overall every single one gets the thumbs up to buy.
Key Tracks: “Random Name Generator” “Magnetized” “Pickled Ginger”