497. Bright Eyes – “The People’s Key”

Here’s another act we caught live in NYC.  The attraction was really the venue (Radio City Music Hall), and a couple of cool-ish supports (, Wild Flag, and Wild Flag).

But I had some inkling that I’d quite enjoyed reviewing an earlier Bright Eyes release, and the chance to see them showcase a new CD was appealing.

I went along expecting a pretty mellow, warbly singer-songwriter affair, with perhaps a little artiness.

What we got was an elaborate, full-band, full-blown art-rock extravaganza, which matches perfectly to the content of this recording.

The CD abounds with whacked out Rasta imagery, lengthy soundbites of some very creepy L.Ron Hubbard-esque rambling and refreshingly organic electro sounds.  The drums in particularly are well-mixed (and live were reproduced through multiple drummers – Modest Mouse style), while Oberst’s vocals are much stronger than I expected.

The songwriting is expectedly verbose and eccentric, and rewards multiple listens. This album reminds me most, in terms of overall feel, with the recent Arcade Fire effort, and I’d certainly be delighted to see these two acts back-to-back on some festival stage.

Last time I reviewed BE I promised to pick up some more of their albums. This album reminds me I need to do just that (plus the Wild Flag debut). If you’re unsure, you can watch/hear this entire album here:

File under: Ear-opening

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One response to “497. Bright Eyes – “The People’s Key”

  1. Great album, listened for a month solid!

    Modern music reviews

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