2011 - A year in review.

# 4. Bright Eyes - The People's Key
(Saddle Creek, February 15th 2011)

The People's Key, Bright Eyes first record since 2007, was rumoured to be the last record to be released by the group led by Conor Oberst. If it was, has still to be seen, but it's one of the Bright Eyes albums that feels most like one recorded by the band Bright Eyes and not a solo recording by Conor Oberst. Musically it should be seen as a follow up to the album Digital Ash in a Digital Urn (2005) because of its more electronic rather than americana sound.

Like all Bright Eyes albums this one also starts off with a soundcollage, or rather a spoken-word intro. The reason behind these album openers has always been to scare away the casual listener, at least that's what the band has told the media over the years.

The first single "The Shell Games" has lyrics that can be interpreted as a song about the Bright Eyes carreer.

"I was dressed in white, touched by something pure
Death obsessed like a teenager
Sold my tortured youth, piss and vinegar
I'm still angry with no reason to be."

The album also contains a couple of the most catchy pop songs that Conor Oberst has ever written. The already mentioned "The Shell Games", "Jejune Stars" and "Tripple Spiral". Those three are the first songs that hook you, but songs like "A Machine Spiritual (The People's Key)" and "The Ladder Song" wouldn't have been out of place on a album like Lifted.

The People's Key was one of the albums I played the most throughout 2011, and the concert I saw with them in Stockholm right after the release was without a doubt one of the best concerts I saw the whole year - probably also the best of all the Bright Eyes shows I've been to. So if this is to be the last Bright Eyes album they will at least leave us on a high.

A stunning album.

Bright Eyes - Jejune Stars (official video)


Simon George said…
i dig the musical year in review. its always fun to look back and remember the wonderfully musical time youve experienced. great post keep up the hard work. check these out IStillGotMyGuitar