Stay Golden, Smog: The Best of Golden Smog

Golden Smog

Golden Smog is a slightly irreverent rock collective that never quite measures up to the bands from which the participants are on loan (Wilco, Jayhawks, Big Star, Soul Asylum, etc.). That said, the songs that the Smog members bring to this side project are usually still pretty great. Together these players make a whole lot of jangle-y joyful noise.
This recently released retrospective is representative of the subtle super-group’s 15-year history and features previously issued material as well as a few oft-bootlegged gems. Familiar highlights include two versions of Gary Louris’ infectious “Until You Came Along” and Jeff Tweedy’s endearing AM-era “Pecan Pie.”
The most striking outtake, which alone is worth the price, is a sparse rendition of Brian Wilson’s “Love and Mercy” plaintively sung by Tweedy to close out this 18-track set.