Cereus Bright draws its muse, and its name, from the night-blooming Cereus– a desert flower that only blooms at night. This beauty blooming from the dark is a symbol–of hope, beauty, and for this young Knoxville band, music. In the past year, Cereus Bright has travelled the country opening for elite musicians from diverse styles–from the soulful harmonies of the Lone Bellow, the melodic folk of Ben Sollee, the meta-modern country of Sturgill Simpson and the jam-pop of Phillip Phillips. Their performances feature a special brand of folk-influenced modern rock delivered with charismatic, harmony-driven energy.
Their latest single, “Winds of Change” puts this passion and breadth on display. Driven by a rambling pedal steel line and strong melodies, the song is a new frontier for the band, expanding from a simple acoustic groove into an upbeat mixture of folk, New Orleans jazz, and rock. It shows a definite step forward for the band, all while holding on to the fun simplicity of their past recordings.
The band’s origins are in Knoxville, TN, where frontman Tyler Anthony (lead vocals, acoustic) met Evan Ford (vocals, mandolin, electric). From its origins as a folk duo, the expanded when they met University of Tennessee musicians Luke Bowers (vocals, drums), Matt Nelson (upright Bass) and Jake Smith (electric guitar). Their productions often expand to include violin player Kaitlyn Ferry and others as in their cover of “Staying Alive”, which premiered on Paste Magazine and was featured on JamBase, Relix, and numerous other publications. They have also been featured on American Songwriter, Brite Revolution, and Live & Breathing.