Friday, December 4, 2009
Cover Art Highs and Lows: Outer South - Conor Oberst & the Mystic Valley Band
Conor Oberst & the Mystic Valley Band
Band photo-shoots are commonly embarrassing in that staged, we-wish-we-were-elsewhere look that's usually visible. It’s a hell of a lot worse when the band-members look incredibly uncomfortable / pissed-off to be in each-other's company. Dude on the left looks relatively at ease, probably because he scored the best chair, but that couch is cracklin’ with leg-crossed uncertainty, particularly the plaid-shirted fellow giving Conor a wary look that is either asking “I'm in the band, right?” or “pink sweatshirt… really…?”. This group looks more likely to have been pulled in from the street as individual pedestrians asked to review advertisements, or even out-of-touch high-school friends forced together at a funeral reception, than a close-knit band. And Conor’s going to pretty extreme lengths to pretend he’s not there. Then you hear Outer South and it all makes sense.