Extended Vacation Image

Generally favorable reviews - based on 9 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: This is the fourth album for the Chicago-based duo, who previously worked with Jim O'Rourke.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. As appealing as it is challenging, Extended Vacation is the sort of album that might even make those Wilco fans who can sing only "Kingpin" believe it.
  2. It all suggests a peculiar update of early-1960s exotica, with a heart of darkness in place of a setting sun.
  3. Filter
    The spacious production leaves room for the sounds (cackling laughter, radio fuzz, the ever-present vibes) to be themselves, resulting in dream-like suites that are at once familiar and confusing. [Holiday 2009, p. 99]
  4. Uncut
    Intricately layering a wide array of sounds, from piano to field recordings, over seven dreamlike pieces, the duo's third album is at times pacific (in every sense), at others deeply unsettling, especially when they run tapes backwards over the end of the 11-minute "Daydreaming So Early". [Dec 2009, p. 108]
  5. Chances are, Extended Vacation won't rope in fans of Gray's and Kotche's respective bands Wilco and Gastr del Sol, since it's a far cry from alt-country or math rock, but those looking for something that's avant-garde but fairly easy to digest might find this minimalist mood piece strangely soothing.
  6. Wilco drummer Glenn Kotche and Jim O’Rourke bassist Darin Gray needed three years to create, during breaks in their schedules, the unhurried dream-like expedition that is their fourth full-length album.
  7. Extended Vacation establishes itself well, creates a world both mysterious and inviting, but once you’re in the world its borders show themselves, and there’s little in the way of surprise.

See all 9 Critic Reviews