Bright Eyes is a man named Conor Oberst and what I gather to be a loose collection of musicians accompanying him. There have been many, easy and accurate, comparisons with Bob Dylan, along with any worthy modern singer songwriter you care to mention. This is an album that sets poetry to music. Conor’s voice is commanding and powerful or frail and weak by turns. His songwriting skills may well have been honed by the previous 4 albums he has under his belt (I’ve not heard them. He may always have been this good for all I know).
Starting with the agit-folk number The Big Picture – which was, for reasons best known to the Bright Eyes collective, recorded in the back of a van – the scene is well set for the rest of the album. Each and every track that follows stands out in it’s own way, is beautifully constructed, and oozes passion by the gallon.
We also get moody atmospherics with Don’t Know When But A Day Is Gonna Come where Oberst conveys tragedy and sorrow in equal and generous measure. It is Morricone-esque in style, if Ennio had been of a wrist slitting bent. The unhappiness continues with the supurb Nothing Gets Crossed out; A dairy of depression that lists the ways you can fail to overcome lethagy, fatalistic and never seeing a silver lining or
the light at the end of the tunnel. Method Acting is in a pop/folk/rock style, kind of like early New Model Army, but better.
But, the finest track of all, for my money, is Lover I Don’t Have To Love. This one is a sleasy exploration of personal lust and the desire for instant gratification. This one
grabs you from the off with it’s intense driving beat and hauntingly desperate lyrics.
This is one of the best albums I have heard in a long, long, time. It’s sheer variety and depth is staggering.
Label : Wichita Recordings
Release Date : Out Now
Website : www.wichita-recordings.com