My quest for free music, quite happily, led me to a band called Wilco a few months ago. I had read a blurb about them in Guitar World many years ago, at which point they were being touted as a great alt-country or “Americana” band. Alt-country? Americana? As far as I can tell, if a band plays music that is somewhat similar to country/folk music of the past but the members don't wear cowboy hats or come from the South, it's alt-country. Well, maybe that's an exaggeration. And I’m really not sure what “Americana” means as applied to a band. I guess the labels put on Wilco don't tell you a whole lot.
The More Like the Moon EP is nothing more than six really good songs. These guys are talented songwriters and musicians. I don't listen to the radio EVER, not even sometimes. But if I did, I would complain that Wilco was not on the radio like they should be. And you can read the story about their bizarre record company fiasco on Wikipedia. But for whatever reason, they started offering this EP for free in 2003, and they made at least one new fan because of it.
I won’t describe the songs or anything like that, because frankly you can download them in 2 minutes and then listen to them in about 20. Most of it is laid back and really good! They seem to have released the EP under different names with different covers, and they let you choose which one you’d like.
So…Americana? Alt-Country? Whatever. How about “good music”? And hey, it sure does make you wanna go out and buy a Wilco album, doesn't it? Mission accomplished. Score one for totally free music!
1. Official website: http://www.wilcoworld.net/
2. Wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilco
3. More Like the Moon EP: http://wilcoworld.net/records/bonus/