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Phoebe Bridgers performs Moon Song on Jimmy Kimmel while dressed as an astronaut

Phoebe Bridgers performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live last night, opting to perform an acoustic version of Punisher track, Moon Song.

The setting for the performance was appropriately space-themed, with Bridgers and violinist Rob Moose both donning astronaut outfits, with the latter performing from a space capsule.

The recorded version of Moon Song is itself a mostly acoustic track, but features a variety of subtle atmospherics and electronic elements. 

Here, Bridgers offered a rawer, folksier take on the song, using a nylon-string acoustic and drafting in Moose to emulate the flitting atmospheric parts on the fiddle. 

Moose is among those credited for the arrangements on Punisher and is a bit of a session dynamo who has also played with Bon Iver, Rufus Wainwright and Sufjan Stevens.

The songwriter also seems to have set her fanbase speculating again about the song’s alleged links to Conor Oberst. 

In the Kimmel performance, she changed the closing lyric from “dead little bird” (as recorded) to “dead yellow bird” – thought to be a reference to the Bright Eyes man, who himself used the phrase “yellow bird” several times in the lyrics for I’m Wide Awake and It’s Morning.

Elsewhere, Bridgers has been in the news after her set was cut short at Austin City Limits over the weekend. The event has since apologised to Bridgers and made a donation to Texas Abortion Funds (a charity she supports) as a gesture of goodwill. 

Matt Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.