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Lifted or The Story is in the Soil....

Author: Ryan Schreiber
05/21/2004 | Pitchfork Media | www.pitchforkmedia.com | Feature
Bright Eyes at Work on New Album or Two
Uncanny resemblance to Elastica's Justine Frischmann still blows our minds

Well, it appears that your old pals in Bright Eyes are back in the studio with longtime producer Mike Mogis, working on their full-length follow-up to 2002's epic-length Lifted, Or, the Story Is in the Soil, Keep Your Ear to the Ground. Though already titled I'm Wide Awake It's Morning, the new record is presently in the early stages of recording, and reportedly won't see release via Saddle Creek Records until January. But the songs? They're written.

Hair-crazy frontman Conor Oberst revealed to NME this week that the record is being laid to tape in both Nebraska and Atlanta, and that, while work has already begun on album, there has been one temporary setback: "Mike, who runs the studio in Nebraska, his girlfriend's having a baby in June so we're waiting for that to happen and then finish the records after that." Wait, did he just pluralize? Or was that just a typo on behalf of the NME team (whose story continually refers to the songwriter as "Oberest")?

It's hard to be sure: Oberst admitted to the publication that he's got so many songs ready to go that he's considering releasing them by genre. In all, 25 future bedroom hymns are currently vying for a spot on I'm Wide Awake It's Morning, including gems like "Old Soul Song", "Another Travellin' Song", and "Road to Joy", which Coachella visitors were treated to during Oberst's set.

Of the genre-jumping new material, Conor said, "A lot of the songs are more traditional folk, country-sounding stuff, and then we have some other stuff with like two drummers-- more beat-oriented, more grooves, not necessarily dancey but just [has] a good beat to it." But indeed, the kicker comes at the story's close, when his pluralization is thrown into crisp focus: "It's kind of weird. I don't know if we're going to put it all out in one release or sort of split it up." Use your illusion, Conor. Use it like it's all you have in the world.


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