Saturday, 22 May 2010

Getting into Bright Eyes

Few artists have music so deeply engrained into their being that they can live their whole lives without being lost for chords. Bright Eyes certainly seems that way, putting out music since he was 13, and still going now, almost 17 years later. His music has ranged from bluesy American folk to hardcore punk-rock, but no matter what he was playing, he never let his guitar gather dust.

Conor Oberst

I took 2007's Cassadaga out of the library a few months ago and never really got into it. On it was the brilliant 'Hot Knives', and a few other decent tracks, but it was a bit too obvious, polished. Only on listening to 2002 album Lifted or the Story is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground have I realised that polish was not all Conor Oberst had to offer.

I'm not a clued-up fan. Ask any one of his thousands of obsessives and you could argue over which is his best project, album, song, lyric. All I know is that 'Lover I Don't Have to Love' took me by the heart the moment I heard it, and the whole albums genuine, open lyrics and sketchy but honest atmosphere are definitely an example of how good Bright Eyes can be. I'll be trying to become that clued-up fan over the next few months, I think.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

For When the Sun Comes Out

Ticking along behind the changing music scenes of the last twenty years, a certain breed of pop group has been working to make every moment sunnier. Belle and Sebastian have perfected their charming breed of 'chamber pop', and fellow Scots Camera Obscura have been right there evolving alongside them.

Here is a Camera Obscura track for your delectation: its bitterness and sadness smoothed over the top of upbeat, offbeat pop - summer incarnate. Listen and love.