Wilco – Handshake Drugs (live on Letterman in 2011)

Back in September 2011, Wilco took part in the “Live On Letterman” series, an ongoing series of live webcasts of concerts in the Ed Sullivan Theater. “Handshake Drugs” is one of my favorite songs from the entirely underrated A Ghost Is Born (which a friend of mine calls A Ghost is Bored, which is just mean :-)).

That album came out at a transitional point in the life of Wilco. It was post Jay Bennett, but before the current lineup solidified. This “Live On Letterman” version rocks even harder than the original with the expanded line up, and the monstrous Nels Cline on guitar. The song crescendos in a noise rock frenzy of sound. Cline could bring down a skyscraper with the sheer power of his guitar playing. And I mean that in a good way.