Conor Oberst and Phoebe Bridgers surprised fans on Wednesday night with a new collaborative album as Better Oblivion Community Center. To promote the release, the duo took the stage on Late Show with Stephen Colbert to perform their song “Dylan Thomas”.
The spirited performance also showcased the project’s unique concept with a highly stylized presentation. Faded and crackling effects gave the whole thing the feel of a promotional VHS tape for a real life Better Oblivion Community Center, a help center for the modern individual in need of emotional cleansing. There were picture-in-picture shots and a quick cutaway to a “shocked” Bridgers and Oberst sitting in the crowd. During the ripping guitar solo, service offerings like “Assisted Self-Care” and “Chosen Family Therapy” flashed across the screen. There was even a phone number — (785) 433-5534 — which when called plays a message advertising all the Community Center has to offer while also teasing an upcoming North American and European tour for the band.
Oh, also, Bridgers’ hair is purple now, so there’s that.
Watch the replay below. Joining Oberst and Bridgers for the performance were Yeah Yeah Yeahs’s Nick Zinner and Autolux’s Carla Azar, who both contributed to the album. Speaking of which, you can stream Better Oblivion Community Center in full here.