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Adrianne Lenker|Bright Future

Bright Future

Adrianne Lenker

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Adrianne Lenker is an astoundingly prolific songwriter. As leader of Big Thief, she wrote the band's 2022 double album, Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You. Bookending that, she penned a pair of solo albums (2020's Songs and Instrumentals) and the new Bright Future. Lenker recorded Bright Future in a solitary analog studio with co-producer Philip Weinrobe and a core group of musicians: Nick Hakim, Mat Davidson, and Josefin Runsteen. Owing to this stripped-down configuration, the album possesses an earthy feel dominated by acoustic guitars, spectral piano, and Lenker's intimate vocals. The musicians layer bewitching harmonies on the country-leaning "Already Lost," while opening track "Real House" starts with an audible creak, as if someone is settling into a chair, and gives way to vivid, stream-of-consciousness lyrics: "Do you remember coming to the hospital when I was 14?/ My friends all left me there spinning/ Dad was angry that you saw everything." The latter track sets the tone for the rest of Bright Future, which finds Lenker in an especially vulnerable, confessional mood. "Candleflame" is a solemn acoustic number infused with a spiritual vibe; "Fool" recalls the homespun songs of early Liz Phair; and Lenker reaches into her falsetto range to match light-touch piano on "Evol." The original recording of Big Thief's "Vampire Empire" is scratchy, lo-fi indie rock instead of spectral pop, giving the song new dimensions. And the album-closing "Ruined" is gentle and devastating, with spacious arrangements, deep-space twinkling production and Lenker sounding weary as she sings, "Can't get enough of you/ You come around I'm ruined." In the end, Bright Future illustrates that Lenker's quality control never wavers in spite of her songwriting productivity—and celebrates the joy of collaboration and creativity. © Annie Zaleski/Qobuz

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Bright Future

Adrianne Lenker

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1
Real House
00:05:58

Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Nick Hakim, StudioMusician - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

2
Sadness As A Gift
00:04:19

Mat Davidson, StudioMusician - Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Nick Hakim, StudioMusician - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

3
Fool
00:02:54

Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer, StudioMusician - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

4
No Machine
00:03:00

Mat Davidson, StudioMusician - Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Nick Hakim, StudioMusician - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

5
Free Treasure
00:03:35

Mat Davidson, StudioMusician - Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - James Krivchenia, Lyricist

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

6
Vampire Empire
00:03:55

Mat Davidson, StudioMusician - Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Nick Hakim, StudioMusician - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

7
Evol
00:04:14

Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

8
Candleflame
00:02:34

Mat Davidson, StudioMusician - Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

9
Already Lost
00:03:27

Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer, StudioMusician - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Noah Lenker, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

10
Cell Phone Says
00:02:38

Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

11
Donut Seam
00:02:25

Mat Davidson, StudioMusician - Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Nick Hakim, StudioMusician - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer - Josefin Runsteen, StudioMusician

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

12
Ruined
00:04:32

Domino Publishing, MusicPublisher - Adrianne Lenker, Producer, MainArtist, AssociatedPerformer, ComposerLyricist - Philip Weinrobe, Producer, Engineer - Josh Bonati, MasteringEngineer

2024 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd 2023 Adrianne Lenker under exclusive license to 4AD Ltd

Album review

Adrianne Lenker is an astoundingly prolific songwriter. As leader of Big Thief, she wrote the band's 2022 double album, Dragon New Warm Mountain I Believe in You. Bookending that, she penned a pair of solo albums (2020's Songs and Instrumentals) and the new Bright Future. Lenker recorded Bright Future in a solitary analog studio with co-producer Philip Weinrobe and a core group of musicians: Nick Hakim, Mat Davidson, and Josefin Runsteen. Owing to this stripped-down configuration, the album possesses an earthy feel dominated by acoustic guitars, spectral piano, and Lenker's intimate vocals. The musicians layer bewitching harmonies on the country-leaning "Already Lost," while opening track "Real House" starts with an audible creak, as if someone is settling into a chair, and gives way to vivid, stream-of-consciousness lyrics: "Do you remember coming to the hospital when I was 14?/ My friends all left me there spinning/ Dad was angry that you saw everything." The latter track sets the tone for the rest of Bright Future, which finds Lenker in an especially vulnerable, confessional mood. "Candleflame" is a solemn acoustic number infused with a spiritual vibe; "Fool" recalls the homespun songs of early Liz Phair; and Lenker reaches into her falsetto range to match light-touch piano on "Evol." The original recording of Big Thief's "Vampire Empire" is scratchy, lo-fi indie rock instead of spectral pop, giving the song new dimensions. And the album-closing "Ruined" is gentle and devastating, with spacious arrangements, deep-space twinkling production and Lenker sounding weary as she sings, "Can't get enough of you/ You come around I'm ruined." In the end, Bright Future illustrates that Lenker's quality control never wavers in spite of her songwriting productivity—and celebrates the joy of collaboration and creativity. © Annie Zaleski/Qobuz

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