So our man Greg Press thinks Bright Flight ain't a patch on "American Water", saying, " This album seems a result of Virginia boredom." Not to pick bones or nits, but Berman was actually living in Tennessee when this record was made. And I agree with another reviewer that "American Water" was marred a bit by Malkmus' "Wowee Zowee" outtakes. In fact, though I think Malkmus is an interesting guy; somebody I'd be down to have beers with, I don't really like his music, which is why I made the criminal mistake of ignoring the Jews until a girl I was dating played me "Random Rules" a few years ago. Pure genius. "American Water" is a fantastic album, in spite of (and occasionally because of) Malkmus' semi-inappropriate Mark E. Smith aspirations, but I think "Bright Flight" tops it. So, admittedly, no song on the record is quite as brilliant as "Random Rules"--which stands up to just about anyting ever written--but "Bright Flight" is a more consistent, casual record. It finds a poet about as relaxed as he can be and be at the top of his game. There's a back-porch kind of lonliness that recalls the subject of the Blasters' "Marie, Marie". Berman *knows* why she sings so sad, starts at that point and then fragments and simultaneously refines the narrative until everything shines perfectly clear. "The Natural Bridge" is a great disc, but sounds palpably forced beside this one. Simply put, "Bright Flight" finds Berman in a comfortable place, and that's truly not a bad thing. Mr. Press also said that "BF" sounds like the hangover from "AW", and I'd agree with that as well, though for me, it's a postive point. Every so often, the hangover's the best part of the whole experience. "Bright Flight" captures that oft-neglected phenomenon better than just about anything I've ever heard or read.