Merging respective inclinations for free improvisation and country rock, Loose Fur is an alliance between avant rock guru Jim ORourke (1969, Chicago, Illinois, USA), and two members of Wilco, songwriter and guitarist Jeff Tweedy (b. 25 August 1967, Belleville, Illinois, USA) and drummer Glenn Kotche. The mildly provocative Loose Fur moniker formalises prior collaborations between the artists. Tweedy had previously appeared on ORourkes 2001 release Insignificance, Kotche played in Jim ORourkes backing band before joining Wilco, while sometime Gastr Del Sol and Sonic Youth member ORourke produced Wilcos acclaimed 2002 album Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. Actually recorded simultaneously to Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Loose Furs 2003 debut album evolved out of rehearsals for a live project that Tweedy, ORourke, and Kotche were planning. ORourke asserted that the trio merely decided to go into the studio and record the songs they had written for the show before they forgot how to play them. The subsequent album compiled six extended entanglements that captured its creators seemingly dichotomous predilections to wilful experimentation and routine melody. Contrary to expectation, ORourke claimed that much of the albums avant noise experimentation was actually Tweedys doing. Echoing the dismay with which many of Wilcos more conservative fans met Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, live guitar-heavy Loose Fur shows in the USA during December 2002 received mixed reactions. Nevertheless, the trios juxtaposition of seemingly opposed (conservative and avant garde) styles seems empathetic rather than provocative. The more cohesive and tuneful Born Again In The USA followed three years later.
Source: The Encyclopedia of Popular Music by Colin Larkin. Licensed from Muze.