Posts Tagged ‘Better Oblivion Community Center’

PHOEBE BRIDGERS  &  CONOR OBERST  - PHOTO BY NIK FREITAS

Hearing Conor Oberst’s froggy, pain-dappled voice paired up with a frank, wispy lady like Phoebe Bridgers. On their self-titled debut as Better Oblivion Community Center, he’s pushing forty, learned and weary after nearly thirty years in the business, while she’s still in the first bloom of fame at twenty-four—and the intermingling of their fragile dispositions makes good sense. Oberst’s voice is always quivering like the last leaf on an autumn tree, while hers cocoons his like a silver lining, patient as a lullaby.

Better Oblivion Community Center performing live in the KEXP studio. Recorded March 17th, 2019.

Songs: Dylan Thomas Didn’t Know What I Was in For Little Trouble Easy/Lucky/Free

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Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberst come from the same musical orbit. One could even argue, the two songwriters—age 24 and 38 respectively—are like long-lost musical siblings. Though at vastly different points in their careers, both musicians know how to crush and revive listeners with inspired woe, romantic poignancy and their instantly recognizable, consoling pipes.

Bridgers’ breakout 2017 debut LP, “Stranger in the Alps”, and her recent work with critical darling supergroup, boygenius, has safely reserved her position in the club of young singer-songwriters poised for rosy careers. Oberst has dozens of records to his name, most notably with the angsty indie outfit Bright Eyes, then as a solo artist and with bands like Desaparecidos and Monsters of Folk. Whether it’s the fictitious firm they reference on their band social media accounts or the album of the same name. With one new song, “Little Trouble” available on their new 7-inch single.

Better Oblivion Community Center is a healing endeavor, and though the jury is still out on the effectiveness of the former, the latter is undoubtedly potent. They capture the serenity of a still lakefront, the spontaneous vigor of a thunderstorm, the lifelong, scenic memories of a childhood road trip and the peaks and troughs of relationships. The two tear-jerking singer/songwriters are at the peak of their powers here, and they’ve managed to distill the exhilaration of that one summer you hoped would last forever and the crackling warmth of a bonfire into 10 effortlessly touching tracks.

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Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberstunveiled their video for “Dylan Thomas,” the lead single off Better Oblivion Community Center’s self-titled debut, surprise-released last week and set for a physical release on February. 22nd via Dead Oceans.

Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberst come from the same musical orbit. One could even argue, the two songwriters—age 24 and 38 respectively—are like long-lost musical siblings. Though at vastly different points in their careers, both musicians know how to crush and revive listeners with inspired woe, romantic poignancy and their instantly recognizable, consoling pipes. The stars aligned just in time for Bridgers and Oberst to write, record and surprise-drop a haunting new album together for a brand new project: Better Oblivion Community Center—which really is their band name and not actually the name of a utopian old folks home. Better Oblivion Community Center is an unsurprisingly tender, affecting excursion. Its largely upbeat instrumentation ebbs and flows with understated folky strums and scintillating keyboards, and the occasional ray of buoyant rock ’n’ roll peeks out just when you need some lighthearted relief from their lyrics. Though many male-female vocal duos lean heavily on duets, this pair elected to skirt that norm by singing mostly in unison and in harmony rather than engaging in the sometimes cheesy call and response.

The Michelle Zauner-directed video finds Bridgers and Oberst showing up to a gig at a swanky establishment—the Better Oblivion Community Center itself—only to find they’ve been booked to perform at what looks like a very genial cult meet-up taking place inside David Lynch’s brain. The musicians and their cultist audience wear blindfolds and VR goggles interchangeably, playing eyeball bingo and doing trust falls, until Bridgers and Oberst come face-to-face with the smirking observer who would appear to be the author of all this oddity. The video ends with the duo doing the only reasonable thing: fleeing the Better Oblivion Community Center .

Much of the record could still loosely fall into the folk camp, but there are moments that you wouldn’t expect from Oberst and Bridgers. The throbbing electro keyboards of “Exception to the Rule,” the fuzzy rock surge at the end of “Big Black Heart” and the psychedelic guitar swells on “My City” all represent a venture into new frontiers

PHOEBE BRIDGERS  &  CONOR OBERST  - PHOTO BY NIK FREITAS

Better Oblivion Community Center is pleased to share with you a commercial for our cherished center directed by ranking Community Center member Michelle Zauner of Japanese Breakfast.

As promised, in the coming months Better Oblivion Community Center will hold meetings across the US and Europe. We welcome you to experience a healing sound bath – live in concert.

  • 10th-May  Bristol – Academy 11th-May London – Shepherd’s Bush Empire 12th-May Manchester – Ritz

Phoebe Bridgers and Conor Oberst (Nik Freitas)

The mysterious band name Better Oblivion Community Center is not only now officially a new project by Phoebe Bridgers & Conor Oberst, their full album, they now have finally revealed that it is the title of their new band and album. Better Oblivion Community Center out via Dead Oceans. The new duo recently performed on the opening credits of Colbert they played “Dylan Thomas” on Colbert.

The album, produced by Bridgers, Oberst, and Andy LeMaster, features Yeah Yeah Yeahs‘ guitarist Nick Zinner (on “Dylan Thomas” and “Dominoes”), Carla Azar (drums on half of the album), and Dawes’ rhythm section Wylie Gelber and Griffin Goldsmith (on the other half). Christian Lee Hutson contributes guitar and Anna Butterss provides bass.

Conor Oberst sang on “Would You Rather” from Phoebe Bridgers’ 2017 debut “Stranger in the Alps”. His latest album, “Salutations”, came out that same year. Last year, Bridgers also recently teamed up with Julien Baker and Lucy Dacus for the boygenius EP.