Eels Shootenanny! on 180g LP
Eels have had one of the most consistently acclaimed careers in music. The ever-changing project of principal singer/songwriter Mark Oliver Everett aka E, Eels have released 10 studio albums since their 1996 debut, Beautiful Freak. Mojo Magazine calls Everett "a member of rock's very own League of Extraordinary Gentlemen," while legendary troubadour Tom Waits says he "eagerly awaits each new release." In 2009 Eels began the release of an album trilogy: Hombre Lobo, End Times, and Tomorrow Morning, followed three years later by 2013's Wonderful, Glorious and the critically-acclaimed The Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett in 2014.
The spring of 2003 was a busy time in Eels history, with many Eels-related releases coming out in the period of two months. I Am The Messiah, a record made in the summer of 2000 by the Eels' favorite Silver Lake DJ, MC Honky was finally released (after being released in Australia in 2002). E, Koool G Murder, Joey Waronker and others helped out on the album. The Levity film score album, released in April, featured two tracks billed to Eels as well as score billed to Mark Oliver Everett, and two more songs, "Eyes Down" and "Mighty Fine Blues" were contributed to the film Holes.
On top of all that, June saw the release of the Eels fifth studio album, Shootenanny! The 80 city Eels Tour Of Duty, which found E flanked by a band outfitted in red polyester suits once worn by Elvis Presley's backing band on his 1968 comeback TV special, began in June and ended in November. Rolling Stone gave the album 4 stars, praising its "Zen-like self-realization," while judges Tom Waits and Cameron Crowe nominated Shootenanny! for the 2003 Short List Music Prize.