Upside Down Mountain
In his teens Orbest was already writing superb music, at the age of 19 he had written three Bright Eyes albums, and the phrase “New Dylan” was thrown around with gay abandonment. However, having such an accolade thrust upon you at such a young age can be a bit of an albatross around your neck, and over the years he has struggled to meet people’s lofty expectations.
However, with this album, Orbest has done his damnedest to be worthy of the early praise. The album is sincere and tinged with melancholy, though there are some brighter tracks to be found like “Hundreds of Ways”. Orbest’s voice has lost none of it’s vulnerable quiver, which adds to the confessional, story telling feel of his work. The addition of backing vocals on many of the songs from First Aid Kit certainly adds to the album, their beautiful harmonies perfectly complementing Orbest’s trembling lilt.
Sounds like: Bright Eyes, Phosphorescent, Wilco
Stand out track: Zigzagging Toward the Light