It hasn't exactly been "light years" since Mark Linkous last completed a set of new songs, but the Sparklehorse frontman has been off the radar for quite a spell. It's apparent, however, that leading up to this hiatus-breaking disc, Linkous has used every moment of that "down time" to explore the darkest nooks and crannies, as he's outfitted his new tales with the sort of surreal and beautiful sounds that make them all the more unforgettable. At times, Linkous plays the hypno-delic card, as on "See the Light," which envelops the listener in layers of sonic gauze that gradually morph from comforting to claustrophobia-inducing. Elsewhere, he and his compatriots opt to kick out the jams, creating a mood that's undeniably redolent of vintage Crazy Horse -- particularly on the bracingly distorted "It's Not So Hard." Whatever the setting, though, Linkous's fragile delivery of his been-through-the-wringer lyrics is thoroughly compelling -- the woozily soulful "Getting It Wrong" (one of two tracks produced by kindred spirit Danger Mouse) and the quietly sinister "Shade and Honey" bear that out in two drastically different ways. By turns sweet, somber, and scary, Dreamt for Light Years... is the sort of album that will imparting new psychic messages with each new listen.