1998 somehow brought us boy bands, nĂĽ-metal, and Neutral Milk Hotel

To commemorate 60 years of the Billboard Hot 100, Off The Charts revisits each year since it was established to spotlight songs and artists that didn’t make the cut, yet still made a significant impact. Years are chosen randomly and—to make it even harder on ourselves—rules for inclusion are that neither the songs nor…

Live’s not dead: 21 great live albums from the 21st century

In May 1968, Johnny Cash released Live At Folsom Prison, a recording of a raucous, emotionally charged performance before a group of grateful inmates that went on to top the country charts, completely reinvigorating Cash’s career. Folsom wasn’t the first successful live album, obviously, but it quickly became a…

Everyone from Coldplay to Miley Cyrus honored Tom Petty with covers this week

This week a multitude of artists paid tribute to Tom Petty, who died of cardiac arrest on Monday at the age of 66. Such was the breadth of Petty’s long career influence and multitude of songs that you can already find a vast range of these live covers (on YouTube and elsewhere), from born-again country artist Miley…

Wilco releases Southern Poverty Law Center benefit song, “All Lives, You Say?”

Now that President Trump has slashed federal funding for groups combating violent white supremacists (he’s only interested in the kind of terrorism that fits his agenda, you see), it’s more important than ever to support nonprofits like the Southern Poverty Law Center. Based in Montgomery, Alabama, the SPLC is devoted…

Jeff Tweedy addresses his trolls directly, promises them “dishes of warm outrage”

As much as he appreciates the band’s fans, Jeff Tweedy’s not about to let Wilco’s Facebook page turn into a politics-free forum. The frontman posted an online missive yesterday in response to commenters turned trolls (or maybe they were always that way) who want Wilco to keep state and global affairs out of their…

Bon Iver, Wilco, and much, much more: Here’s what’s coming to record stores in September

Every Friday, dozens of new records are released into the wild. Some make big splashes, and others sink almost immediately. For most music consumers, it’s almost too much information, and save for those precious few who spend their hours glued to review sites and release calendars, it’s hard to know what’s coming out…

Wilco strips down its sound for Schmilco, its 10th studio album

Twenty-two years into its existence, the Chicago-based alt-rock band Wilco is as productive as it’s ever been. Maybe more so. Almost exactly one year after releasing the critically-acclaimed Star Wars, we’re getting something brand-new in both content and form. In juxtaposition to the “roughhewn, fuzzed-out blast”…