Sound — 10
Generally I think Conor has matured a lot prior to the the release of Cassadaga. The album sounds like traditional Bright Eyes with an infusion of folk and country. I've read Cassadaga is a spiritual center in florida for psychics. You can actually hear Conor's gain of confidence in Cassadaga in tracks such as "Everything Must Belong Somewhere," and "Four Winds," which have an uplifting feel instead of older Oberst songs where the general impression is remorse.
Lyrics — 10
As expected, Conor employed his lyrical ingenuity as much as possible in Cassadaga. One of my favorite moments in Lyricism was 3 verses of "Lime Tree," where Conor narrates his moments of self-realization. It flows so well with the instrumentation and creates a very climactic closing to the CD. It's expected though, Conor always seems to wow me with lyricism.
Overall Impression — 9
Many listeners were disappointed because on Cassadaga the sound of Bright Eyes is changed to a more Folky Bluesy kind of sound instead of the previous acoustic experimental genre. It's an impressive change and really displays Conor's versatility in different genres. I find it's a refreshing change and it doesn't sound likely that Bright Eyes will return to the previous one man group sound.