Wilco at Jazz Aspen Snowmass - 09.03.10

Categories: Concert Reviews

Jon Solomon

09.03.10 | Jazz Aspen Snowmass

"Don't even think about yelling 'Freebird," Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy responded to the guy in the crowd who screamed out the name of the Lynyrd Skynyrd tune early in Wilco's ambitious two-hour set at the Jazz Aspen Snowmass Labor Day festival. "You can wait 24 hours," he said, referring to the fact that Skynyrd was also playing over the weekend.

I hate being the crabby bastard who blasts people for jabbering at concerts, but some folks, like the dude who yelled out one of rock's stupidest clichés, got in the way of this being a truly stellar show. Sure, it's bound to happen at any show, especially at festivals, but I just wish the crowd would have shown the band a bit more respect, especially in the quieter moments, such as when Tweedy offered up a gorgeous acoustic take of "Remember the Mountain Bed."

Jon Solomon
But while the crowd did have its share of talkers, there were obviously a fair number of true fans, which was apparent during "Jesus, Etc.," when Tweedy had the crowd sing the first few verses of the song, one of the many highlights of the night, and during energetic takes on "Handshake Drugs" and "Impossible Germany," which showcased some remarkable playing by guitarist Nels Cline.

Jon Solomon

Digging into a diverse selection of the band's catalogue, which spans fifteen years, Tweedy introduced "Box Full of Letters" (from Wilco's debut, A.M.) by saying, "Beavis and Butt-head love this song." Before launching into "I'm Always in Love," Tweedy said, "Beavis and Butt-head never weighed in on this one." Then to add to an outstanding one-two-three punch of older tunes, the guys kicked out a damn fine take on "A Shot in the Arm." While hearing the older material was great, the songs from the last few albums were equally strong, especially "Wilco (the Song)," "One Wing" and "Hate it Here."

Critic's notebook and set list on the next page.

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