Jeff Tweedy: ‘An album Is a Journey’
Defending the idea of an "album," Tweedy says, "Whenever the so-called experts say the album is dying as a format, I think: 'Since when have we listened to so-called experts?' Are video games killing chess as well?"
He goes on in the 1,300 word essay to describe his own childhood and the role albums played in the shaping of his musicianship, and how that experience is trickling down to his two sons (one of whom, Spencer, drums on Tweedy's upcoming album, 'Sukierae').
So why the sudden call-to-arms in support of albums?
First off, why not?
Music fans have always had to defend the ritualistic listening experience to their less-informed friends. It only makes sense that the defense receives some national attention, and Tweedy -- who has been making and releasing music for 30 years -- is a perfect spokesman.
'Sukierae' is a double album. It's not a double album just because it's four LPs -- it's a double album because it is quite literally two different journeys.
As Tweedy explains:
I understand in this day and age there might not be many people who will listen to it that way, but it doesn’t matter – because I want to listen that way. I’m not a curmudgeon, a luddite or anti-modern technology doomsayer. I just want to listen to the album and have a feeling that one part ,has ended, and now I can take a little breather before I listen to the second part. Or I can listen to the second part another time. It’s a double record on vinyl, so there are three breaks like that. I wanted it to have different identities artistically and the album format allows me to do that ...
We sequenced it as disc one and disc two. The album gets simpler and softer and bolder at the same time. The idea is that as it winds down it gets clearer.
Read Tweedy's entire column here.