Bright Eyes-Persona Non Grata

I’ve been a ghost here over the past few months. I have my reasons, which I won’t get into now, but trust me when I say that as soon as I saw there was a new Bright Eyes song in the world, coming here was my first thought. Conor and the gang have been such a monumental part of my life since the early 2000’s that every release deserves the holiday treatment. So today is officially “Persona Non Grata” Day!

It’s been a month or so since the exciting news that Bright Eyes was joining the Dead Oceans family and going on tour. With that came the promise of new music, which has had me waiting with bated breath. And now, finally, we have the first single from the upcoming album, their first since 2011’s The People’s Key. Also their first song featuring BAGPIPES!!!

In their note to fans, the band says they had a hard time picking which new song to lead off with, and felt this one was best. It’s a solid choice. If you’ve ever listened to a Bright Eyes song, this is going to feel very familiar. The brooding lyrics, the bittersweet instruments, it’s all very 101 level stuff. But it’s grown up. Conor and the band have aged with the fans, and you can sense that life has given them all some bruises they wear proudly.

There is no info given as to when the album will be out or if the tour will go on as planned. In these uncertain times, it’s hard to know if anything will ever go on as planned. At least we have a new song that we can incessantly break down and debate while we sit in isolation. Where does this song rank in the pantheon of Bright Eyes tunes? When you make a list of the songs, do you include Conor’s solo career, or Better Oblivion? They are all part of a whole, I’d say.

Enjoy the new Bright Eyes. I’ll try to be writing more often since I have no excuse not to other than laziness (although, let’s be honest, laziness is a GREAT excuse).