Wilco Plays the Arlington
- Photographed by: A. Arthur Fisher
Two Hours of Dizzying, Melodious Folk-Rock.
Wilco filled the halls and seats of the Arlington theatre with an extremely eclectic crowd, Santa Barbararian and otherwise. From youthful hipsters to kilt sporting gentlemen, from middle aged hippies to chubby techies, die hard fans rushed the rows to witness their favorite Grammy-nominated Chicagan slacker-folk rock musicians in action.
Band-members took the stage, beginning, without verbal introduction, with "Reservations," "Art of Almost," and "I Might." Bringing forth earthy undertones we recognize from new Americana folk movements juxtaposed against subtly futuristic sounds gently reminiscent of the film Logan's Run.
The flashing lights reflected across entranced, delighted visages. Each of Wilco's songs were met with a wave of voracious applause from their 2,000 strong audience. It was clear, this band has the capacity to create a large sound, laced with intimate, delicate simplicity. With six band-members, Wilco layers tones in easy synchronicity, filling an enormous space, engaging a high volume of concert goers.
Moving through the set, I found myself to be partial to their slower tunes like "I Am Trying To Break Your Heart". Wilco seems to be incredible at producing evocative, emotive air. Singer Jeff Tweedy's voice truly lends itself to songs of mourning, longing, and unrequited love.
Much of the set offered large, driving, booming songs, many of which almost induced states of trance. Hurdling, urgent drums, twisting psychedelic-esque vocals, prodding organs and flashing lights made for a near-drug experience. Standing, I found myself teetering on the heels of my clogs, lock-kneed and the beginnings of crossed eyes... in the best possible way.
After a dizzying 19-song-long set, the men of Wilco returned for six more, beginning with "Whole Love" and ending with "Hoodoo Voodoo". The crowd was most certainly given their money's worth.
Many people attend music performances for an emotional experience. Many to collectively experience with a large gathering of people. Live music possesses the incredible capacity to evoke strong authentic emotion, in conjunction with light and entertaining slacker rock fare, Wilco provided such an experience.
02. Art of Almost
03. I Might
04. I am Trying to Break Your Heart
05. One Wing
06. She's a Jar
07. Impossible Germany
08. Born Alone
09. One by One
10. California Stars
11. Capitol City
12. Handshake Drugs
13. Box Full of Letters
14. Heavy Metal Drummer
15. I'm the Man Who Loves you
16. Standing O
18. Dawned on Me
19. Shot in the Arm
20. Whole Love
21. Hate it Here
22. Red-Eyed And Blue
23. I Got You (At the End of the Century)
24. Outtasite (Outta Mind)
25. Hoodoo Voodoo