10 Songs, 35 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

While Stephen Malkmus’ groovy guitar leads had assumed a starring role on American Water, this album returns the focus to Berman’s lyrics, which renew the craftsmanship of The Natural Bridge, his apex as a writer. Berman has said that Bright Flight was written at a time when his personal affairs were at a nadir, and his companions were “crooks and prostitutes.” The narrators of these songs are often preoccupied with doom, and the album's first half presents visions of imminent self-destruction. The opening of “Horseleg Swastikas” summarizes Berman’s state of being: “I'm drunk on a couch in Nashville / In a duplex near the reservoir / And every single thought feels like a punch in the face / I’m like a rabbit freezing on a star.” However, Berman also believes in the dual nature of life, and within its despondence Bright Flight records the glimmer of new love. Berman had recently met Cassie Marrett, who appears on the album and would soon become his wife and muse. Even as Berman looks downward, he can’t disguise his heart’s excitement on “I Remember Me,” “Tennessee,” and “Room Games and Diamond Rains.”

EDITORS’ NOTES

While Stephen Malkmus’ groovy guitar leads had assumed a starring role on American Water, this album returns the focus to Berman’s lyrics, which renew the craftsmanship of The Natural Bridge, his apex as a writer. Berman has said that Bright Flight was written at a time when his personal affairs were at a nadir, and his companions were “crooks and prostitutes.” The narrators of these songs are often preoccupied with doom, and the album's first half presents visions of imminent self-destruction. The opening of “Horseleg Swastikas” summarizes Berman’s state of being: “I'm drunk on a couch in Nashville / In a duplex near the reservoir / And every single thought feels like a punch in the face / I’m like a rabbit freezing on a star.” However, Berman also believes in the dual nature of life, and within its despondence Bright Flight records the glimmer of new love. Berman had recently met Cassie Marrett, who appears on the album and would soon become his wife and muse. Even as Berman looks downward, he can’t disguise his heart’s excitement on “I Remember Me,” “Tennessee,” and “Room Games and Diamond Rains.”

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