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Golden Smog

A boozy, side-project covers band that gradually evolved into a kind of roots rock supergroup, Golden Smog was a loosely affiliated unit comprised, at various times, of members of Soul Asylum, the Replacements, Wilco, the Jayhawks, Run Westy Run, and the Honeydogs. The group first came together in the Minneapolis area in the late '80s as a country-rock reaction to the punk and hardcore sounds that dominated the Twin Cities' musical scene at the time; eventually Golden Smog became something of a fixture at local clubs, where they played a handful of shows annually. From the onset, the lineup was mercurial, although Run Westy Run vocalist Kraig Johnson as well as guitarists Dan Murphy (Soul Asylum) and Gary Louris (the Jayhawks) were relative constants. Smog shows were usually thematically based, in keeping with the tongue-in-cheek nature of the project; one performance was devoted exclusively to Eagles covers, while another paid homage to the Rolling Stones and was billed "Her Satanic Majesty's Paycheck."

Somewhat unexpectedly, a five-cut covers EP, On Golden Smog, appeared in 1992. While the closing track, a rendition of Thin Lizzy's "Cowboy Song" sung by Soul Asylum roadie Bill Sullivan, followed in the project's original devil-may-care spirit, the remainder of the record was considerably more focused, keeping in line with the primary musical work of the bandmembers -- who, this time out, were essentially Johnson, Murphy, Louris, Jayhawks bassist Marc Perlman, and ex-Replacements drummer Chris Mars, along with Soul Asylum vocalist Dave Pirner (on a cover of Bad Company's "Shooting Star"). Even more unexpectedly, the next Golden Smog effort -- 1996's full-length Down by the Old Mainstream -- was made up largely of original material composed strictly for the project. With a lineup that included Johnson, Murphy, Louris, Perlman, Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy, and Honeydogs drummer Noah Levy (all of whom recorded under pseudonyms as a result of contractual obligations), the record bore few reminders of Smog's beer-soaked origins, instead revealing a more mature and thoughtful band breaking free of the restraints of their day jobs and having some serious fun in the process. Weird Tales followed in 1998, but it wasn't until 2006 that the group released Another Fine Day, which, unsurprisingly, due to the amount of time that had passed since the last album, sounded little like earlier Golden Smog records. Blood on the Slacks was released the following year. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi
full bio

Comments

I miss the smog, some of my fav moments in map.
Yea I always thought that Tweedy sounded like Garcia also Lewis.
So much Alex I can't see through this smog!
yld.catz
um Thin Lizzy
Eagles were great, but classic rock radio and vh1 killed them for me. Not that it matters.
zaloomj
It is a Kinks song. It is on the Lola vs. Powerman album, and Dave Davies is the singer. This is a cover.
subrat874
Good stuff, all day long!
cas74real
Until today I would have bet my last dollar that this was a Kinks song. I'm still not entirely convinced.
I live in mpls and i wish i was born to see soul asylum husker du golden smog and the replacements . I guess we have good musicians here now like atmosphere and brother ali but nothing beat 80s and 90s mpls rock.
Sounds mediocre to me. Thumbs down
Sounds like Big Star no?
eagles suck? wow dude, you must be a hip-hopper or a justin beeber groupie. either way, your musically dead. sad. I LIKE this group so far as i have heard, which is about 4 songs. i am a HUGE jayhawks fan so its not a stretch for me to like this.
long drives with someone who digs the same music is even better.
Golden Smog one of the best groups around! Listening to Radio King now. Great tunes for taking a nice long drive.
ccurtin8
Bronze Smog Rules
mtprindivill e
Weird Tales is one of the best albums of the last 20 years... classic, alt-country genius. If you like the Jayhawks or Wilco, or used to rock out to Soul Asylum back in the day, this is an album for you.
steve20828
Meh.
naehrlich
Same here John, nice band
wenberep
Way better then silver smog
slapshot1894
Never heard 'em before...... . . . . . b u t I like 'em.
Love the Smoggers! Kristopher, you are a nit.
raphaellorr
so who from the replacements ?
legis225
mpls
funboy77mm
lol, utter crap. MY EARS! tonedeff singer ahahha!
his voice reminds me of Jerry Garcia!
scott53532
I love these Golden Smog guys. I'm so jazzed to see someone carry on the country rock genre that was born in the early 70's in LA with artists such as the Eagles. The Eagles deserve some kudos for sure and I applaud GS for throwing them a bone. Great songs and musical talent came from the Eagles. It's not that easy to keep 3 guitar players in check with one another and they did a great job at spreading out that talent. If you measure a group's success by how many people let go of their pocket ca
don't leave husker du, mikekowalczy k 1
More proof that Minnesota is home to some of the best music in history. Bob Dylan and Prince top a list hundreds of great artists long. Soul Asylum, Wilco, The Replacements , Mason Jennings, Matt Wilson...all with MN roots or connetctions . We'd probably all have a different Top Ten list. But, dang that Minnesota music is good.
jasondb3
There's nothing "super" about the Eagles at all. Except that they sucked super bad. This group on the other hand is amazing.
The Eagles were kind of a supergroup if you wish to stretch the definition, Walsh, Meisner, Schmitt all came from other bands (actually I think both bass players came from Poco)
Cream was a pretty good supergroup.
Sounds good...it's good to hear Tweedy on something he's not smothering.. .
been listning since i was like 7 years old...SWEETN E S S
I gotta see thes guys live. By the way, The traveling Wilburys were good, but CSNY was and is the best super group hands down
Cool beans...
nice listenening to this group the golden fog wouldn't know what to do, except on the refrain.
wonderful discovery. thanks Pandora
Tasty....
This is the first I've heard them and when looking into them, I was sure I would find some Badfinger influences. Guess not, still I like what I've heard so far!
estoodious
traveling wilburys would be the best super group ever. but these guys are very good and uncompromisi n g l y creative in the way they approach the very idea of what a band is. alongside being the most prolific super group.
best sooper group ever. hands down. Indie or not.

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