Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground [Explicit Lyrics]

( 15 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Sean Griffin
Conor Oberst, the skinny, 22-year-old mastermind of Bright Eyes, has been making music since he was 14, and Lifted or the Story Is in the Soil... is the culmination of his many years of work. As emotionally ambitious as Neil Young's Tonight's the Night or Bruce Springsteen's Born to Run, the disc contains some of the most gripping pop songs released in 2002. Oberst draws on a cascade of sounds to flesh out his songs -- album credits list a drum corps, a choir, a "country choir," and a "drunk choir," as well as a cast of brass and string players -- so that his varied influences aren't all that obvious. Like a young Bob Dylan, Oberst is torn between the political and the ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Sean Griffin
Conor Oberst, the skinny, 22-year-old mastermind of Bright Eyes, has been making music since he was 14, and Lifted or the Story Is in the Soil... is the culmination of his many years of work. As emotionally ambitious as Neil Young's Tonight's the Night or Bruce Springsteen's Born to Run, the disc contains some of the most gripping pop songs released in 2002. Oberst draws on a cascade of sounds to flesh out his songs -- album credits list a drum corps, a choir, a "country choir," and a "drunk choir," as well as a cast of brass and string players -- so that his varied influences aren't all that obvious. Like a young Bob Dylan, Oberst is torn between the political and the personal, and that friction suits him. But he grew up in the '80s and '90s, so it isn't a shock that the catchy "Lover I Don't Have to Love" sounds like Echo & the Bunnymen singing Elvis Costello. The '80s influences continue with "Bowl of Oranges," which channels the Cure, and "Nothing Gets Crossed Out," which suggests Aztec Camera. The centerpiece of Lifted is "Don't Know When but a Day Is Gonna Come," an anthem only a youngster like Oberst could have written and recorded without giggling: "Is it true what they say about the Son of God? / Did he come to save / Did he come at all? / And if I dried his feet, with my dirty hair would he make me clean again?" With unblinking sincerity and innumerable musical gifts up his sleeve, he pulls it off, especially when the orchestra kicks in. But Oberst is no more obsessive about his music than are his fans, and it's easy to hear why the richly bejeweled Lifted stands as one of 2002's best albums.
All Music Guide - MacKenzie Wilson
When Bright Eyes brainchild Conor Oberst issued Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground in August 2002, he was 22 years old. Critics were already calling him the "indie Bob Dylan", but the new millennium had seen a lot of those introverted, intelligent types Ryan Adams, Beck. Bright Eyes, though, delivered a solid, intricately produced album without the majors' monotony. Immediately, one can sense Oberst's literate approach. His vocal curdle is abrasive yet warm. It's similar to the cooing of Robert Smith, but lush in heartache like Paul Westerberg, leaving the storybook of Lifted or The Story to earn massive praise. "Waste of Paint" is rough-cut with edgy acoustics, while "From a Balance Beam" glows with pop-like optimism. Chimes and simple drumming keep the story of personal insecurity and the fear of the unknown coming alive in a dreamy sort of way. Even when he's aching his way through the pop rumble of "Method Acting," Bright Eyes convincingly lures one into his eclectic musical world. Oberst obviously has the talent to support the hype. "Lover I Don't Have to Love" is a dark number with its Radiohead-like doom and gloom; however, the piano swirl of "A Bowl of Oranges" offers a brighter reflection. On Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground, Bright Eyes has mixed badness with beauty for a sonic storybook that relates to everyone. It's slightly overwhelming at first, but one must allow a grace period to fully absorb the abstract desire behind this album.
Rolling Stone - Rob Sheffield
We're flooded with new Dylans these days, most of them just hype jobs with acoustic guitars and fat press kits. But Conor Oberst, the... wunderkind behind Bright Eyes, has the goods.... If you're like most rock & roll fans, you've probably been starved for something like Bright Eyes.
Spin Magazine - Joe Hagan
By turning indie-folk into nonstop neurotic cabaret, [Conor] Oberst may have made the best album of his prodigious, prolific career. (8)

We're flooded with new Dylans these days, most of them just hype jobs with acoustic guitars and fat press kits. But Conor Oberst, the... wunderkind behind Bright Eyes, has the goods.... If you're like most rock & roll fans, you've probably been starved for something like Bright Eyes.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 8/13/2002
  • Label: Saddle Creek
  • UPC: 648401004625
  • Catalog Number: 46
  • Sales rank: 33,511

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Bright Eyes Primary Artist
Casey Scott Bass
Roger Bass Choir, Chorus
Chris Brooks Piano
Jennifer Lewis Vocals
Andy LeMaster Electric Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Choir, Chorus
Mike Mogis Banjo, Dobro, Mandolin, Pedal Steel Guitar, Glockenspiel, Electric Guitar, Choir, Chorus, Bells, Vibes, Hammered Dulcimer
Clark Baechle Clarinet, Drums, Choir, Chorus
Todd Fink Vocals, Choir, Chorus
Mike Sweeney Drums
Tiffany Kowalski Violin
Ted Stevens Electric Guitar
Orenda Fink Trumpet, Vocals, Choir, Chorus
A.J. Mogis Choir, Chorus
Maria Taylor Organ, Piano, Vocals, Choir, Chorus
Jiha Lee Flute, Vocals, Choir, Chorus
Technical Credits
Andy LeMaster Engineer, Horn Arrangements, String Arrangements
Mike Mogis Engineer, Horn Arrangements, String Arrangements
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 15 )
Rating Distribution

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(9)

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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Pure poetry

    My favorite of Obersts albums by far. Try reading the songs before you even listen to the album, his songs are amazing poetry. The words alone make you feel something and the music expands upon them. The songs might seem too sentimental but I find the sincerity to be totaly honest.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Nothing Gets Crossed Out On This Album

    Oberst impresses with Lifted. When I first heard "You Will. You? Will." I knew there had to be more where that came from, so to speak, so on a limb I purchased Lifted and haven't taken it out of my CD player since. From the simple acoustic songs like "You Will" to the complexity of "Don't Know When But a Day Is Gonna Come," Oberst's lyrics and musical intelligence will grasp you and reel you in. Just listen to the words in "Waste Of Paint" and you'll be taken, and curious to know how one man can possess so much talent.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I like 'em

    does it matter if Oberst is trying or not? All that matters is that if the music is good if it speaks to the listener, and I think this album does that. Oberst may have depressing lyrics, but he put entire emotion into his songs and they reflect back to the audience. If you think Conor is just some sap with some potential I think your confused about the subject. The music is what should matter, like the song "on a string" is a great song . I think this is a great cd if you don't think so, and if you can't get into it then its all good, go pick up some sell out album with techno and cheap ryhmes.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Beautifully Honest

    This is an touchingly poignant collection of honest songs draped with orchestra tones. Absolutely Fabulous. The lyrics are raw and pensive. I know a lot of people say it's too depressing, but if you only listen to music to feel happy than there's something wrong with you. Some music is just sad...maybe those people need to open themselves up to music that actually has depth. Not everyone only sings about teen angst, the hot girl in school, and ho's who give it to them anytime they want it...

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Another brilliant work from Oberst

    With this album, Conor Oberst proves himself not your run of the mill "emo" or "indie" singer, but rather an artist blending several different musical styles together, including folk and traditional country. "Lifted..." shows Oberst as not only a musician, but a poet and composer. The string arrangements of this album are gorgeous, and while his lyrics are not the cheeriest, they are beautiful and honest in a not overly angsty way. The only downfall of this album is the overly long intro to the first track, and the dragging on of "Waste of Paint." Conor Oberst is definitely not a wonderful singer or guitarist, but he is a genius musician and lyricist. Buy this album.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Amazing.

    Bright Eyes's Lifted is the one of the greatest albums I've heard in a very long time. "Lifted or The Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground" is stunning both lyrically and musically. It will make you feel, make you think, and make you want to create. Beautiful orchestrations, passionate vocals. I recommend this album to anyone with a willing imagination.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    not as bad as some would lead you to believe

    i don't listen to much of this style of music at all, but i'm a fan of oberst (bright eyes in particular). musically it's better than most bands, and lyrically its pretty amazing. true, his lyrical content can be on the depressing side at times, but compared to his other albums, this record is full of sunshine. if anyone else is sick of overproduced mtv "music" being forced down our throats, this band is a breath of fresh air.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Violent Femmes Redux

    I don't know which critics Kenaldo is talking about. Most of the reviews I've read eviscerate this album. But when I actually listen to this album, I can't help but think that it is one of my top five albums of all time. For a "pop culture junkie" such as myself, that says a lot. Don't fall asleep listening to this album, though. Trust me, you will get nightmares. Try driving.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Meeting you half way

    This album is for the most part depressing and Oberst's genious is also his downfall. The ochestration is beautiful, but lyrics are definately a real downer. Buy it if you love "orchestra rock"

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    That dude is wack

    This album is pretty good, its way better than that dude says it is. I like the airy-ness of the whole album

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I wish you would have left this story buried

    I am sure that there is a criwd who enjoys this sort of music, but too many of the big respectable critics gave this too much praise. Oberst has talent and potential, but just tried to be too different. If you like singer/songwriter with strange sound samples try Beck's or Wilco's new album.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews