Technically, Cereus Bright is Tyler Anthony and Evan Ford, two young folk musicians from Knoxville, TN. Their songs showcase strong, passionate harmonies singing stories of real life—hope and heartbreak, adventure and stillness. Tyler plays guitar, piano, and sings, while Evan sings backup while playing lead guitar and mandolin. They frequently play with bassist Matt Nelson and drummer Luke Bowers.
Ideologically, though, Cereus Bright makes a strong case for folk music. Recently the genre of folk music has come to mean “acoustic pop”, and all seems to blend together in a post-Mumford and Sons mush. Real folk, though, is meant to communicate; to use simple, melodic music to communicate stories of success and heartbreak. This is the goal of Cereus Bright—to draw you in with beautiful composition and keep you interested and moved with poetic yet direct lyrics. Comparisons with bands such as the Avett Brothers, Fleet Foxes, and the Head and the Heart are inevitable, and are major compliments.
The band finds its muse—and its name—from the Cereus flower: a white desert flower that blooms only at night. Just as this flower grows in the most desolate of settings, so does art draw its beauty from brokenness and heartache. In their lyrics and melodies, Cereus Bright aims to embrace life as both messy and beautiful.
Cereus Bright just released its first recording, Goldmine EP, on November 12, 2012. They’ve reached sustained success in their hometown of Knoxville, TN, and are branching out to the surrounding area, playing in Tennessee, Georgia, the Carolinas, and beyond.
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