Brian Wilson's back

And he's still breaking hearts

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"Midnight's Another Day" from That Lucky Old Sun (A Narrative)

(streaming at )

"All these people/ make me feel so alone" is the lyric at the heartbreaking center of this song from Beach Boy/tragic genius Brian Wilson's forthcoming release, which he cowrote with Smile collaborator Van Dyke Parks. The cut recalls his Zen-depressive masterwork, the 36-year-old "'Til I Die," and shows him again alone, vulnerable, hearing voices and disconnected — while still plugged into a muse that guides his awe-inspiring sound. Offsetting his now-weathered voice and the mental illness he has fought for 40 years are soaring, multilayered harmonies, a plaintive French horn and simple acoustic piano. The effect is so raw, heavenly and deep that it raises goosebumps. Brian's back. 4 stars

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