Another Fine Day
by Katie Sauro
Born in 1989 as a side project of sorts, Golden Smog is a revolving five-piece based in Minneapolis featuring the oh-so-familiar vocal stylings of Mr. Jeff Tweedy (Wilco, Uncle Tupelo), as well as Gary Louris of the Jayhawks, and Dan Murphy of Soul Asylum—yeah, that’s right, that “Runaway Train” band. In their first album in several years, entitled Another Fine Day, the band sticks to safe, “radio-playable” alt-country with a little bit of dusty folk and some buzzing guitars. The pleasant acoustic numbers, especially the stripped-down duet between Tweedy and Louris called “Listen Joe,” are the highlights on the album, but Golden Smog steps it up with rockers like “Hurricane” and the poppier “Corvette.” Unfortunately, Tweedy is only featured on a few songs, and those are probably some of the best on the album. Take a listen, for example, to their cover of the Kinks’ “Strangers.” The piano, and even Tweedy’s voice, are a bit Bowie-esque, and really quite amazing. All in all, the album isn’t all that inventive and aside from a few exceptions, it isn’t all that memorable either, but fans of the collective’s individual bands will definitely want to check it out.