Bright Eyes share new single ‘Persona Non Grata’ and promise to release new album this year “no matter what”

Conor Oberst and co are back

Bright Eyes have released a new song in ‘Persona Non Grata’, the band’s first new material since 2011.

The Conor Oberst-led band announced their reunion back in February, along with the unveiling of a raft of tour dates around the world.

Now, they’ve shared their first piece of new music in nine years, ‘Persona Non Grata’. “There’s a playground of children/In the shadows of buildings,” Oberst sings on the track. “There’s a line out the church/Where your homelessness works.” Listen to it below now.


In a message shared with the track, the band addressed their fans and sent “love and solidarity to everyone out there feeling alone, frightened and isolated”. “We, like so many others, had many plans for 2020,” they continued.

“We will be releasing a new album this year no matter what. We also have lots of touring plans which we are now reassessing. We will keep you informed as things progress. We very much want to get on the road and hope to see you all in person sooner rather than later.”

They went on to say of ‘Persona Non Grata’ that it “seemed as good of a place as any to start” in sharing their new work. “And it has bagpipes!” they noted. “Which is a first for us.”

The band are currently set to headline End Of The Road festival in September. At present, the festival is still set to go ahead, although organisers have said they are “closely monitoring the situation”. It is unclear whether Bright Eyes’ other UK dates, which are set to take place in the week before End Of The Road, will be held as planned.


Bright Eyes’ last release came in 2011 with the album ‘The People’s Key’. In a four-star review, NME said at the time: “‘The People’s Key’ is on a mission to decipher how quantum mechanical codes, prisms and triple spirals can add up to the complexity and confusion of humankind. Certainly, it boldly goes where no wobble-voiced, therapy-scarred Nebraskan psych-poet has gone before.”

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