Picks and Pans Review: Weird Tales
Supergroups seldom live up to expectations, and the music they make usually adds up to less than the egos involved. (Remember Blind Faith?) Here, however, is a happy exception featuring six country rockers on moonlighting breaks from their own bands: Wilco's Jeff Tweedy, the Jay-hawks' Gary Louris and Marc Perlman, Soul Asylum's Dan Murphy, Big Star's Jody Stephens, and Kraig Johnson of Run Westy Run. While such partnerships are usually short-lived, the Smogs are now on their third album. And as they did on 1992's On Golden Smog and Down by the Old Mainstream in 1996, they fill this CD with loads of good-time twang and harmony-rich tales of wounded spirits and romantic salvation. Despite the album's title, the only thing weird about these tunes is that they're so uniformly catchy with an easygoing, after-hours honky-tonk appeal.
Bottom Line: Endearing back-porch country rock