Sometimes heralded as a "new Dylan," Conor Oberst might just as well be proclaimed the new Gordon Gano or Loudon Wainwright III, but those names wouldn't make for headlines of the same size. At any rate, Lifted - 2002's installment in his Bright Eyes' collective's burgeoning discography - is another testament from a pissed-off singer-songwriter who, unafraid to look uncool, ends up looking pretty cool in the end. "It's cool if you keep quiet, but I prefer singing," he all but yells on the opening "Big Picture." That's certainly true as he holds forth on another dozen songs that happily, passionately conflate the political and the personal. Fans will debate what the best Bright Eyes album is, but Lifted is the sort of achievement few can argue against.
The Big Picture
You Will. You? Will. You? Will. You? Will.
Lover I Don't Have to Love
Bowl of Oranges
Don't Know When but a Day Is Gonna Come
Nothing Gets Crossed Out
Waste of Paint
From a Balance Beam
Let's Not Shit Ourselves (To Love and To Be Loved)