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Bright Eyes 

Lua/Take It Easy (Love Nothing) (Saddle Creek)

Conor Oberst has gone from writing sensitive stories influenced by mid-American suburbia to sensitive stories influenced by New York City, where he's been residing for the past couple of years. In 2005, Oberst will release two new Bright Eyes LPs, I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning and Digital Ash in a Digital Urn.

In the meantime, however, fans get two teaser EPs, each containing a single from the respective full-lengths and a few non-album tracks. Lua shows Oberst dabbling in the same croon-folk for which his fans have embraced him. The title track finds him singing softly, over nothing but an acoustic guitar, about nighttime adventures, but the gem is the upbeat cover of the Bruces' "I Woke Up With This Song in My Head This Morning." Taking cues from the Postal Service and labelmates the Faint, Take It Easy foreshadows the latter of the two records in its intricate glitch-pop, all ringy synths and digital percussion. Both EPs show that Oberst's songwriting has grown more focused and that Bright Eyes fans have a lot to look forward to in the coming year.

More by Abigail Clouseau

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