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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Bright Eyes at the Riviera Theater - March 15, 2011

Conor Oberst says Bright Eyes are over. He says that after this album there will be no more, that he will part ways with Mike Mogis and Nate Walcott, continuing to do whatever he does. The concert at the Riviera Theater sure felt like a goodbye show on Tuesday night, as Bright Eyes played a greatest hits set with a no regrets feel. It did it's job too, leaving me and the whole rest of the sing-along crowd wanting more.

Openers and Saddle Creek labelmates Mynabirds had plenty to bring and easily filled up the theater with their plunky, poppy sound. There's no wikipedia article on them, so I don't know the lead singers name, but she had a hell of a voice. Dueling keyboards and otherwise sparse instrumentation gave their music a unique feel, and it was a good way to kill the time until bright eyes.

Then the lights shut off and the extremely creepy voice from the beginning of The People's Key came on, as all of the girls in the crowd began to scream. As their idol walked on the stage the screaming elevated to a higher level. Bright Eyes started right into Firewall, the opening track of their newest album, following with another song. Unfortunately, these songs paled in comparison live to older tracks. This was immediately obvious when the opening keyboards of Take It Easy (Love Nothing) started. The singalongs started then too, and continued throughout the night with Bright Eyes older songs. Songs such as We Are Nowhere, And It's Now and Bowl Of Oranges got huge crowd reactions, as songs from I'm Wide Awake, It's Morning were the obvious highlights. All in all it was a great show, with the only downsides being some of the new songs and the sometimes overpowering light show (which was actually quite enjoyable most of the time). Conor Oberst proved to everyone on Tuesday night that he still has it, and he made us wonder why he's ending Bright Eyes for good.

Bright Eyes Setlist Riviera Theater, Chicago, IL, USA 2011