Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Bright Eyes - "The People's Key"

Conor Oberst returns with his Bright Eyes moniker for the seventh time with new album The People’s Key out today on Saddle Creek. After focusing on folk and Americana for the last few albums, he breaks out the keyboards and pop choruses that echo back to Fevers & Mirrors and 2004’s electro-inspired Digital Ash In A Digital Urn. Again Conor is assisted by full-time members Nate Walcott and Mike Mogis, who also produced the album.

Just like every Bright Eyes album that has came before, the album opens with a strange intro, with this one being a two and a half minute shamanic spoken word piece from Denny Brewer before easing into the meat of the opening track, “Firewall” featuring foreboding atmospherics and background vocals from Andy LeMaster. The first single, “Shell Games” follows with possibly Conor’s catchiest chorus to date and a driving rhythm. Musically “Jejune Stars” is upbeat and poppy with a bouncy beat but with contrasting apocalyptic lyrics. “Approximate Sunlight” begins with more spoken word, before revealing a gloomy outlook with a trip-hop vibe that also sounds like a lost Fevers & Mirrors-era track. “Haile Selassie” stands out with chugging electric guitars, swirling synths and infectiously catchy vocals. “A Machine Spiritual (In The People’s Key)” mixes steady acoustic guitar strumming and heady lyrics with a dreamy haze of echoing vocals and synths. Other standouts are “Triple Sprial” with its happy handclaps and the aching “Beginners Mind” which both feature guest vocals from Laura Burhenn of The Mynabirds. The album closes with the piano-led “Ladder Song” which harkens back to classic Bright Eyes while also sounding fresh and the gaunt New Order-like guitar lines and hazy atmosphere of album closer “One For You, One For Me”.

After perfecting folk-rock over the last few albums and projects, the charge of electricity on The People’s Key provided Conor a much needed change of pace without missing a note.

For more info click here: http://www.conoroberst.com/ and http://www.saddlecreekrecords.com/

Download "Haile Selassie" here:


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