Bright Eyes – The People’s Key

Release Date: February 15, 2011
Reviewed By Chris Johnston

Well, Bright Eyes fans, it’s the end of the road. Fortunately for you, The People’s Key will quench that final thirst for Conor Oberst and his enigmatic craftsmanship. To fans of Bright Eyes, this is just another chapter in their collection. But for those of you who have never listened to it, it’s weird. No two songs have the same idea behind them which, on this album, is more of a blessing than a curse. I say that not because it’s a great thing, but because I really don’t know if I can handle more than five minutes of a certain song. So, at the very least, the changing of styles and concepts between each song keeps it interesting. If you don’t know anything about Conor Oberst, this is where you’ll hear where he got his start before moving farther into acoustic and folk rock. Previous fans will be pleased that a lot of the same elements that garnered the band’s initial popularity are still there. Namely the experimenting with different beats and drum sounds behind the arsenal of instruments that are used. The album has its catchy parts and delightful hooks (“Triple Spiral”), as well as some more rock oriented jams (“Jejune Stars”) but as a whole, it’s hard to pinpoint a track that will stand out ahead of the rest. And this is because they’re so different from each other. The album closes with a bit of a funky-style groove that seems like it might be a send off to Bright Eyes fans entitled “One For Me, One For You.” But I’m sure with how many projects he has his hands in, Conor Oberst won’t be going away anytime soon. I had a chance to see the packaging of The People’s Key and it’s actually really engaging. The whole design is fire-oriented with a foil shine to it. For those of you that will buy it, you’ll be extremely pleased with it. It just looks cool. All in all, if you’re a fan of Bright Eyes then go pick this one up. If you’re not a fan of Bright Eyes and you’re looking to find some new tunes, this probably isn’t your best bet.


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