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It Takes A, Er, Villagers

The New Now

One of the highlights of this year's South By Southwest musicconvention was the appearance of Villagers--an Irish outfit that effectively is thecreation of Conor J. O'Brien.


The young singer-songwriter is just releasing what is easilyone of the year's best albums in BecomingA Jackal--a highly literate, melodic and occasionally ominous soundingrecord that hints at a longer career that is only now beginning to unfold.

In his earlier days near Dublin, O'Brien first garnered notice for hisband the Immediate, whose sole album InTowers And Clouds drew much acclaim but also signaled his intent toeventually go his own way. Taking on a group name--Villagers--O'Brien recorded anEP and single before signing to Domino and making the elaborate Jackal, upon which he plays nearly everyinstrument.

In Austin,Yahoo Music was pleased to welcome the young singer for an informal hotel roomshoot--in which, with just his guitar to accompany him, he offered up anemotive version of "Ship Of Promises" and told us a bit about what theVillagers is really all about. Check out both, below, for an early preview ofone of the year's biggest talents.

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