I'm Wide Awake It's Morning CD (2005)

Artist: Bright Eyes

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Product Overview

Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst continues to earn his reputation as our most respected young troubadour with almost frightening ease. For the past few years he's been tagged "rock's boy genius" by the music press. These albums are a soundly articulated slice of modern life rolled into two very different records, both bursting with all the heartfelt poetry for which Bright Eyes' records have earned their acclaim. Of course, the rough edges haven't gone away - the palpitation of a splintering note, the crack of a voice as it overextends, the clumsy thump of a misplaced thumb. It's all still there. But there's a glorious new level of depth, a maturation of texture, writing and delivery. His best work yet.


Label Saddle Creek Records
SKU 63941263
UPC 648401007220
UPC 14 00648401007220
Format CD
Release Date 1/25/2005
Author Bright Eyes
Associated Artist/Work Album Leaf (The)
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Associated Artist/Work Son, Ambulance
Artist Influence Bob Dylan
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Artist Influence Leonard Cohen
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Artist Influence Modest Mouse
Artist Influence Neil Young
Artist Influence Paul Simon
Artist Influence Pixies
Artist Influence R.E.M.
Artist Influence Radiohead
Artist Influence Scott Walker
Artist Influence Sebadoh
Artist Influence Simon Joyner
Artist Influence The Cure
Artist Influence The Palace Brothers
Artist Influence The Smiths
Artist Influence Violent Femmes
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Artist Follower Austin Plaine
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Technical Info
Engineer Jim James; Mike Mogis; Emmy Lou; Mike Mogis
CatalogID 72
Lable Name Saddle Creek Records
Released 01/25/2005
Original Release 2005
Number of Discs 1
SPARE Code n/a
Mono/Stereo Stereo
Studio/Live Studio
UPC 00648401007220
Musical Guests
Jim James
Emmylou Harris
Album Notes and Credits
Bright Eyes: Conor Oberst (acoustic guitar); Mike Mogis (pedal steel guitar); Tim Luntzel (bass guitar); Jesse Harris .
Personnel: Conor Oberst (vocals, guitar); Jake Bellows (vocals, harmonica); Emmylou Harris, Jim James, Andy LeMaster, Maria Taylor (vocals); Jesse Harris , Alex McManus (guitar); Mike Mogis (12-string guitar, mandolin); Nate Walcott (trumpet); Nick White (piano, Fender Rhodes piano, organ); Jason Boesel, Clark Baechle (drums).
Additional personnel: Nick Walcott (trumpet); Nick White (organ); Emmylou Harris, Jim James, Andy LeMaster.
Audio Mixer: Mike Mogis.
In early 2005, young indie icon Conor Oberst (AKA Bright Eyes) unveiled two full-length albums--I'M WIDE AWAKE, IT'S MORNING and DIGITAL ASH IN A DIGITAL URN. Whereas the latter proved to be a departure into electronic music, the former sticks to Oberst's established sound, which combines the urgency and heart-on-the-sleeve sentiment of emo-rock with twangy, down-home feel of alt-country and folk music.
I'M WIDE AWAKE begins with Oberst telling a story that morphs into "At the Bottom of Everything," a jangly, upbeat tune featuring My Morning Jacket's Jim James on backing vocals. Throughout the record, Oberst reaches nearly hysterical peaks, seemingly overcome with emotion as his wavering voice, which often recalls Violent Femmes' Gordon Gano, veers almost, but not quite, out of control. Oberst's eccentric vocal delivery makes his pairings here with ever-graceful harmony singer Emmylou Harris intriguing, particularly on the rambling shuffle of "Another Travellin' Song." Although Oberst manages to work up plenty of energy on some tracks, the quieter tunes, including the dreamy New York City narrative "Lua," are the album's highlights, revealing hushed melodies that showcase his maturing songcraft.
Artist Overview
Bright Eyes is the brainchild of Omaha, Nebraska, singer-songwriter Conor Oberst, around whom the band (which has at times consisted solely of Oberst) revolves. Part of an Omaha indie scene centered on the Saddle Creek label, Oberst learned at the feet of Omaha cult hero Simon Joyner, whose post-Dylan songpoetry remains a heavy influence on Bright Eyes. Oberst began recording at a prolific rate while still a teenager, but 2002's LIFTED... broke him through to the mainstream as a fresh new face.
Professional Reviews
Rolling Stone (No. 966, pp.57-8) - 4 stars out of 5 - "[A] masterpiece of country-flavored heartland angst, plowing the musical ground between THE FREEWHEELIN' BOB DYLAN and the Cure's SEVENTEEN SECONDS..."
Spin (p.62) - Ranked #21 in Spin's "40 Best Albums Of 2005" - "[A]n intimate folk-rock CD by a principled singer/songwriter who's working hard to keep things indie..."
Spin (pp.85-6) - "[A]n often-great set of songs about loneliness - romantic, professional, even civic." - Grade: A-
Entertainment Weekly (No. 804/805, pp.130-1) - "[O]berst retains his eye for evocative detail....the ambient alt-country arrangements lend shape to his pileup of words and music..." - Grade: B
Uncut (pp.72-3) - 4 stars out of 5 - "[B]uilt on a classic country template, and frequently dropping to an intimate hush, where Oberst's voice, and the harmonies of guest Emmylou Harris, wait to lure you in..."
Alternative Press (p.81) - 5 stars out of 5 - "A country record inspired by the city, I'M WIDE AWAKE is riddled with soft folk fantasies and acoustic ramblings..."
Magnet (p.53) - Ranked #6 in Magnet's "The 20 Best Albums Of 2005" - "Oberst's most mature, focused and consistently impressive album."
Magnet (p.88) - "[F]ull of inventive, successful ideas....By a country, city or suburban mile, WIDE AWAKE is Bright Eyes' finest hour."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.60) - Ranked #13 in Mojo's "The 50 Best Albums Of 2005" - "[A]n album of witty, intense ballads, with an electro-pop chaser..."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.102) - 4 stars out of 5 - "[M]agic....Alternately thundering and hushed, exuding the warmth of human breadth, its rhapsodies present a portrait of an artist at an early height of his powers..."
Disc 1
1 At the Bottom of Everything
2 We Are Nowhere and It's Now
3 Old Soul Song
4 Lua
5 Train Under Water
6 First Day Of My Life
7 Another Travelin' Song
8 Land Locked Blues
9 Poison Oak
10 Road To Joy
Product Attributes
Artist Bright Eyes
Label Sadlecreek Records
Music Format Compact Disc

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