A couple of years out of the limelight seem to have affected Bright Eyes’ Conor Oberst. Cassadaga – the follow up to 2005’s double hit of I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning and Digital Ash In a Digital Urn – is the most mature Bright Eyes record yet.
The band’s seventh studio album, which is named after a spiritualist community in Florida, sees a new smooth sheen of production not found on previous Bright Eyes records. You can still expect the trademark indie-folk plucked guitars, but with an added gloss of orchestral swells, melancholy pedal steel and Oberst’s unmistakeably fragile vocals. Fans of Ryan Adams or Elliott Smith could find a lot to love here.
Also worth a listen this week is a Fields NapsterLive Session on, you guessed it, Napster. The band blend forward-thinking folk with more than a hint of My Bloody Valentine and last single If You Fail We All Fail has been bothering the top of my ‘most played’ list for a month or so now.