Shell Games. Sure, the title of Bright Eyes’ lead single from new album The People’s Key could be a snarky label for the state’s budget woes. But it also fits the track’s stripped-down, George Harrison-esque dark beauty. No longer indie’s wordy kid wonder, Bright Eyes maestro Conor Oberst made 30 this year, and this cascading groove kicks in with a knowing glance back at the anger of his twenties as he leans into the hope-flecked confusion of the oncoming decade of adulthood.
PostSecret – A Valentine Video. One of the joys of this age of Web-assisted collaborative art has been the success of PostSecret.com and the thousands of anonymously submitted letters and artful postcards collected from readers the world over. This video, set to the wistful electro-pop of Donora, animates dozens of love-themed cards. Whether they’re confessions of longing, devotion or heartbreak, these words and images offer joy for merely being.