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Chelsea Walls – Original Music By Jeff Tweedy

I Wanna Taranna Pt. 8: BMV #8 Chelsea Walls – Original Music By Jeff Tweedy

I am a simple man. I see Jeff Tweedy, I purchase!

Now, I remember disliking Ethan Hawke’s film, though it was years ago that we saw it. I can’t even tell you now why I didn’t like it, just that I didn’t. Great story, Aaron! Still, it had a stellar cast so one would think I’d have found things to like about it, but there you go.

Of course I’m not here to talk about the movie, though I imagine the film and the music are inextricably tied together. Plugging in this CD independently, though, I am met with instrumental sound explorations, some playing with feedback and screeching guitars, or bluesy drones, over top of (I have to say) a fantastic bottom end (try it in the good headphones!). Some are piano meditations over brushes on cymbals. The score tracks are moody, interesting, definitely listenable.

The whole band of Wilco appears twice here, once as Wilco (on Promising, original to this soundtrack), and once from the Billy Bragg & Wilco sessions – the beautiful When The Roses Bloom Again which, near as I can tell, is only available on the third CD of the 3CD/DVD Mermaid Avenue Sessions boxed set, as it doesn’t appear on either Mermaid Avenue I or II. I guess, then, that was a rarity on this soundtrack, as the boxed set didn’t drop until about 12 years after Vol. I and II, and this soundtrack too. Anyway.

Making an appearance here is Jimmy Scott, the jazz vocalist (check him out) on a beautiful cover of John Lennon’s Jealous Guy. Also, Robert Sean Leonard duets with Steve Zahn on one track, the roughly demo-recorded version of Wilco’s The Lonely 1 (from Being There), and then he leads on another, the gospel tune Softly And Tenderly Jesus Is Calling. Actors singing can be hit or miss, but these aren’t too bad.

In all, this was a decent CD. It’s atmospheric and, as I said, probably tied tightly to what goes on in the film. Maybe I need to see the flick again, see if I agree with my past self’s negative assessment. The music, though, I liked it.

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