AOTY 2021

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot

Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot
Critic Score
Based on 13 reviews
2002 Ratings: #1 / 194
User Score
2002 Ratings: #1
Liked by 81 people
April 23, 2002 / Release Date
LP / Format
Nonesuch / Label
Jim O'Rourke, Wilco / Producer
Indie Rock / Genres / Website
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Beneath the great story of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, there are all the tropes and symbols and coincidences of a little mythology; but under that is a fantastic rock record.


While their songs still maintain the loose intimacy that was apparent on their debut A.M., the music has matured to reveal a complexity that is rare in pop music, yet showcased perfectly on Yankee Hotel Foxtrot.

Tiny Mix Tapes
Unlike other artists where you try to relate your situation to the songs, Wilco’s work just seems so natural, like a conversation with someone you grew up with.
Drowned in Sound

An album that is so compelling, complex and challenging but still remains completely free of any pretence. Believe it or not this album actually exists, and it goes by the name of Yankee Hotel Foxtrot


With each revisiting, a new layer of the noise seems to click into place, and what’s left at the heart is an eclectic and often somber collection of Americana at its best: honest, open, fragile, shaky, and burdened with an indefinable sadness that tinges even its most upbeat moments.

Entertainment Weekly

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot is a subliminal album. Spin it once and it barely registers. Play it five or six times and its vaporous, insinuating, rusty-carousel melodies start to carve out a permanent orbit in your skull.

No Ripcord
With Jim O'Rourke on hand, to add yet more spiky touches of genius, only the bleakest of hearts will fail to be touched by the colossal weight of aching creativity that flows through this record.

Yankee Hotel Foxtrot sounds like a statement; it simply doesn't register on a gut level that something as simultaneously epic and homespun as this doesn't have some huge link to real world events.

There's love, there's the war on terror, and for Wilco, both are a battlefield. 'Yankee Hotel Foxtrot' sees the former country rockers streamlining their sound down to a painful bareness, and telling us how they hurt.
Rolling Stone

In Yankee Hotel Foxtrot, Tweedy, bassist John Stirratt, keyboard-guitar player Leroy Bach and drummer Glenn Kotche actually bring you the enchanting sound of things falling apart — and gingerly, doggedly coming together again. This is an honest, vivid chaos, and it tells a good story.

The Guardian

The band have taken some giant lateral leaps that make any notions of sound hilariously inadequate.

Every once in awhile, I stumble upon a widely regarded classic that lacks any sort of noticeable merit. Maybe my enjoyment is initially fueled by hype. Maybe if I were to take a step back, I'd see a glaring flaw or find nothing spectacular at all. I had this superstition for quite some time with Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. What made this so revered to the public eye as opposed to, say, The Wallflowers? (No hate to the latter though.) It just kind of meshed with other folk and alt-country staples to ... read more
I don't know where I would be without this album. I don’t meant to be too personal here but this saved my life back in 2015, brought me up from my lowest of lows.
Yankee Hotel Foxtrot is a record which I don't think I have the words to explain. This album is iconic and absolutely deserves all the praise it gets. Wilco completely embraces the alternative and indie rock sound they had been dabbling with since Being There except now being drenched in this post 911 atmosphere.

From the start of this record we can already here Wilco's willingness to experiment on "i am trying to break your heart" The soundscapes are wild using all sorts of ... read more
10 People / 100 Albums Challenge: Friendship Is Agony

Subject 03: Benjamin (01/10)

I was nervous going into this, but I genuinely loved this album quite a lot. There are so many moments of pure bliss on these songs, with 4 out of these 11 being some of the best indie rock songs of the 2000s in my opinion. I also loved how melancholic some tracks are, feels like a bit of a window back in post 9/11 immediately when it happened. In a way it sorta reminds me of my favorite folk album oat, ... read more
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