Vinyl LP pressing. Singer-songwriter Conor Oberst’s debut album for Nonesuch Records, UPSIDE DOWN MOUNTAIN, is, as it’s title implies, a study in contrasts, a glance up to the heavens and a glimpse into the abyss. ‘There’s a certain solitude to this record,’ Oberst admits, and themes of loneliness, dislocation, and regret repeatedly surface. Yet it’s making was far from solitary, as Oberst gathered friends old and new for the recording, including producer Jonathan Wilson, engineer Andy LeMaster, bassist Macey Taylor, multi-instrumentalist Blake Mills, and the Swedish sibling folk-rock vocal duo First Aid Kit. The overall warmth of the sound tempers the starkness of the stories being told and Oberst renders his carefully detailed lyrics with an easy intimacy, the still youthful quaver in his voice poignantly underscoring the rueful, decidedly mature words.