I'm Wide Awake It's Morning

I'm Wide Awake It's Morning

4.9 23
by Bright Eyes
     
 

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Not many songwriters can channel the spirit of Gram Parsons one moment and borrow a few tricks from Ludwig van Beethoven the next, but few have the sort of nerve that seems to come so naturally to Bright Eyes ringmaster Conor Oberst. He's called in a wide array of collaborators this time around, including My

Overview

Not many songwriters can channel the spirit of Gram Parsons one moment and borrow a few tricks from Ludwig van Beethoven the next, but few have the sort of nerve that seems to come so naturally to Bright Eyes ringmaster Conor Oberst. He's called in a wide array of collaborators this time around, including My Morning Jacket singer Jim James -- whose reedy tenor provides an eerie counterpoint to the sepulchral "At the Bottom of Everything." More intriguing are Oberst's duets with Emmylou Harris -- three of 'em in all -- that range from blatantly Dylan-esque (the rambling "Landlocked Blues") to stridently anti-folk (the acerbic "Wide Awake"). Even with all the help, however, Oberst manages to maintain full control of the proceedings -- in part because he's become increasingly accomplished as a singer and in part because he's toned down his verbosity enough to allow his words to actually sink in. That's particularly true on the disc's polar opposite highlights: "Lua," a sparse, chilly ballad on which Oberst deals with a destructive, drug-addled romance, and "First Day of My Life," a surprisingly raw-boned workingman's lament. True to its title, this disc is as eye-opening as a sonic journey gets.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Last time around, Conor Oberst -- who for all intents and purposes, is Bright Eyes -- shoved all of his interests into one long, overstuffed epic, but with the simultaneously I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning and Digital Ash in a Digital Urn, he separates the country-rock on the former and the messy modernistic indie rock on the latter, as if to counter the criticisms that he can't focus. I'm Wide Awake is designed as a nakedly honest singer/songwriter album, somewhat inspired by the classics of the genre in the '70s -- he even recruits Emmylou Harris for some harmonies, hoping that some of the Gram Parsons' magic will rub off. Stripped of the careening, dramatic, arrangements of Lifted, Oberst's music seems simpler, and while his voice -- a quavering bleat that's halfway between Feargal Sharkey and the Dead Milkmen's Rodney Anonymous -- is an acquired taste; fans will find this to be his most direct album yet.
Rolling Stone - Rob Sheffield
A masterpiece of country-flavored heartland angst.

Product Details

Release Date:
01/25/2005
Label:
Saddle Creek
UPC:
0648401007213
catalogNumber:
72
Rank:
19991

Related Subjects

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Bright Eyes   Primary Artist
Emmylou Harris   Vocals
Jesse Harris   Guitar
Alex McManus   Guitar
Andy LeMaster   Vocals
Mike Mogis   Mandolin,Pedal Steel Guitar,12-string Guitar
Clark Baechle   Drums
Maria Taylor   Vocals
Jim James   Vocals
Jake Bellows   Harmonica,Vocals
Jason Boesel   Drums
Conor Oberst   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Tim Luntzel   Bass,Bass Guitar
Nate Walcott   Trumpet
Nick White   Organ
Matt Maginn   Bass
Nick White   Organ,Piano,fender rhodes
Nick Walcott   Trumpet

Technical Credits

Mike Mogis   Engineer
Jim James   Engineer
Conor Oberst   Composer
Zack Nipper   Artwork
Emmy Lou   Engineer

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I'm Wide Awake It's Morning 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 22 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
The most amazing album I've heard modernly since Modest Mouse's Lonesome Crowded West. There are no words for this album that do it justice, I have to wonder what it felt like to get a hold of Bob Dylan's Highway 61 Revisted days before it's official release and listening to it and knowing just what the album was destined for. I'm not saying this album is going to become what Highway 61 became for Dylan but I'm sayng it should. The lyrics, the guitar, the singing, and yes that mandolin all play together perfectly mixing folk, indie, country and pop all so nicely that it is impossible to listen to tracks like The First Day of My Life or Land Locked Blues and not feel a tingle up your spine. And the closing lines of the closing song of the album seem to define the whole career of Conor Oberst with "I could have been a famous singer if I had someone else's voice. But failure has always sounded better, let's f*** it up boys, make some noise." From there it goes into a Neutral Milk Hotel like clash of noise and music. Really if you like pop, folk, country, alternative, indie rock, or emo check this out, two songs, number six and eight, alone are worth the cost of the CD but all the other songs are nearly as good. Having heard all of Bright Eyes' records including the two new ones I recommend this one above all others and the band itself above all others.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This very well could be my favorite album of all time. Oberst is a lyrical genius. It is impossible to listen to his songs without getting entirely wrapped up in them. This album is a must own.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Conor Oberst realy did a perfect job on this c.d. The stand outs are 2,8,9,and 10, but the rest of the c.d. is great
Guest More than 1 year ago
What a great album. My favorite tracks were ''At the Bottom of Everything'', ''Old Soul Song (For the New World Order)'', ''First Day of My Life'', ''Another Travelin' Song'', ''Land Locked Blues'', and ''Road to Joy''. I mean, these are the best lyrics I've ever heard. Anyways just get the album.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I am addicted to this CD, I love how Conor is able to write about personal moments and this CD is very introspective, is that the right word?, anyway I would recomend it more than Digital Ash in a Digital Urn, I like the folksy roots of this CD more than the electronic Digital Ash. Some favorites are "First Day of My Life", "Road To Joy", and "Train Underwater".
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is amazing, I've been listening to it non-stop since the day I bought it. Conor Oberst is a truly gifted singer and songwriter, his haunting lyrics penetrate the soul and stay with you for a long time... I mean, these are some of the best lyrics I've ever heard. Each song is special and beautiful in its own way. Everyone should own this album.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is absolutely remarkable! It's relaxing, yet thought provoking with Oberest's tranquil, yet somewhat abstract lyrics of love, loss, and politics. It has an indie rock flair, yet with the accompaniment, it has a country, bluegrass twang. I LOVE IT! Listen to it almsot everyday!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I absolutely love this. I got it about 24 hours ago and am now listening to it for the 4th time. The lyrics are fabulous - they're very meaningful without being over-the-top. And the music is so perfect that I feel the emotion in the song. My favorites are At the Bottom of Everything, Lua, and Road to Joy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The cover art is a perfect visual: brownstones quilted in calico. It's country-folk-bluegrass that rocks out like Brooklyn and feels soft and warm to the touch.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Conner O'berst Has once again ripped my heart out. First Day of My Life and Lua are the biggest tear jerkers of all-time. My generations Bob Dylan!! You will not be disappointed!!
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