An Attempt To Tip The Scales Lyrics - Bright Eyes

Review The Song (17)



Did you expect it all to stop at the wave of your hand?
Like the sun's just going to drop if it's night you demand.
Well, in the dark we're just air so the house might dissolve.
But once we are gone, who's gonna care if we were ever here at all?
Well, summer's going to come, it's gonna cloud our eyes again.
No need to focus when there's nothing that's worth seeing.
So we trade liquor for blood in an attempt to tip the scales.
I think you lost what you loved in that mess of details.
They seemed so important at the time
But now you can't even recall any of the names, faces, or lines.
It's more the feeling of it all.
Well, winter is going to end, I'm going to clean these veins again.
So close to dying that I finally can start living.

[There is a radio interview in the end of this track]

[Radio interviewer (impersonated by Matt Silcock of Lullaby for the Working Class) - R]
[Conor Oberst (impersonated by Todd Fink of The Faint) - C]

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[Radio interviewer:] Hi, we're back, this is radio K[beep]x and we're here with Conor Oberst of the band Bright Eyes. How are you doing, Conor?
[Conor:] Fine, thanks, just a little wet.
[R:] Oh, it's still coming down out there?
[C:] Yeah, I sort of had to run from the car.
[R:] Well, we are glad you made it! Now, your new album, "Fevers and Mirrors"... Tell us a little about the title. I know there's a good deal of repeated imagery in the lyrics; fevers, mirrors, scales, clocks: Could you discuss some of this?
[C:] Sure. Let's see, the fever's...
[R:] First, First let me say that, this is a brilliant record, man, we're all really into it here at the station and we get lots of calls, it's really good stuff.
[C:] Thanks. Thanks a lot.
[R:] So talk about some of the symbolisms.
[C:] The fever?
[R:] Sure!
[C:] Well, the fever is basically, what ever ails you, or oppresses you... It could be anything, in my case it's my neurosis, my: depression... but I don't want it to be limited to that... it's certainly different for different people. It's whatever keeps you up at night.
[R:] I see.
[C:] And the, and the mirror's like, as you might have guessed, self-examination, or reflection, or whatever form. This could be vanity, or self loathing. I, I know I'm, I'm guilty of both.
[R:] That's interesting. How about the scale?
[C:] The scales are essentially our attempt to solve our problems quantitatively, through logic or rationalization. In my opinion it's often fruitless, but... always, no, not always... And the clocks and calendars it's uh... is just... time... our little measurements, it's like, it's always chasing after us.
[R:] It is. It is. Uh, How about this Arienette, how does she fit into all this?
[C:] Umm, I'd prefer not to talk about it, in case she's listening.
[R:] Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't realize she was a real person.
[C:] She's not. I made her up.
[R:] Oh, so she's not real?
[C:] Just as real as you or I.
[R:] I don't think I understand.
[C:] Neither do I, but after I grow up, I will. I mean a lot... A lot of things: are really unclear for me right now.
[R:] That's interesting. Ah, now you mentioned your depression...
[C:] ...No I didn't.
[R:] You're from Nebraska , right?
[C:] Yeah, so?
[R:] Now, let me now if I'm getting too personal, but there seem to be a pretty dark past back there somewhere. What was it like for you growing up?
[C:] Dark? Not really... uh... actually I had a great childhood, my parents were wonderful. I went to a Catholic school. They have... they had money, so... it... It was all... easy. Basically I had everything I wanted, handed to me.
[R:] Really? So some of the references, like babies in bathtubs, are not biographical?
[C:] Well I do have a brother who died in a bathtub. Drowned. Actually, I had five brothers who died that way.
[R: chuckles]
[C:] No, I'm serious. My mother drowned one every year for five consecutive years. They were all named Padraic, so, that's: They all got one song.
[R:] Hmm.
[C:] It's kinda like walking out the door to discover it's a window.
[R:] But your music is certainly very personal.
[C:] Of course, I put a lot of myself into what I do. But it's like, being an author you have to, free yourself to use symbolism and allegory to reach your goal and, and a part of that is, compassion, empathy for other people and their, and their situations. Some of what I sing comes from other people's experiences as well as my own. It:It shouldn't matter, the message is intended to be universal.
[R:] I see what you mean.
[C:] Can you make that sound stop please?
[R:] Yes! [a bell that has been softly ringing for the duration of the interview becomes silent] And your goal?
[C:] I don't know. Uh, create feelings, I guess. A song? It never ends up the way you planned it, though.
[R:] That's funny that you say that, do you think that...
[C:] Do you ever hear things that aren't really there?
[R:] I'm sorry, what?
[C:] Never mind. How long have you worked at this station?
[R:] Oh, just a few minutes. Uh, now you mentioned empathy for others. Would you say that that is what motivates you to make the music that you make?
[C:] No, not really. It's more a need for sympathy. I want people to feel sorry for me. I like the feel of the burn of the audience's eyes on me when I'm whispering all my darkest secrets into the microphone. When I was a kid, I used to carry this safety pin around with me, everywhere I went in my pocket. And when people weren't paying enough attention to me, I'd dig it into my arm until I started crying. Everyone would stop what they were doing and ask me what was the matter. I guess, I guess I kinda [unintelligible].
[R:] Really? You're telling me you're doing all this for attention?
[C:] No, I hate it when people look at me. I get nauseous. In fact, I could care less what people think, about me. Do you feel that? Wanna dance?
[R:] No, I'm feeling sick.
[C:] I really just wanna be warm yellow light that pours all over everyone I love.
[R:] So, uh, you're gonna play something for us now. Is this a new song?
[C:] Yeah, but I haven't written it yet. It's one I've been meaning to write, uh, called, "A Song To Pass The Time."
[R:] Oh, that's a nice title.
[C:] [mumbles] No, it isn't. You should write your own scripts.
[R:] Yeah, I know!







Click here to submit the Corrections of An Attempt To Tip The Scales Lyrics
kind of annoying | Reviewer: matthias | 10/8/12

erverytime I listen to this record I stuck at this part and want to skip it. Actually I never did, because I still not get the whole meaning of it, if it has some. If it doesn't than I'm confused why this track is part of this record.

After all I'm listening to this record for four days now and got not sick.

molly saved me some work ;) | Reviewer: anonymous | 1/19/12

I honestly found this album a little lackluster to me, compared to Lifted Or The Story Is In The Soil, Keep Your Ear To The Ground, outside of this song and its interview. I find the interview hilarious with its sort of dark humour. The unintelligible words are 'like, that' said quickly, I believe.

Omg lol | Reviewer: Anonymous | 2/7/10

So I was listening to this track, and in the middle of the interview, when Connor states that "it's really just a need for sympathy", it sounds like someone recorded over top of the word sympathy with "felaccio". Lol, it's at 7:03. Check it out.

Fake | Reviewer: boomshocka | 9/11/09

In a real interview a while ago (I can't cite the source because I can't remember it), I remember reading about the interview at the end of this song. It's totally fake. Conor explained that it was one of his friends impersonating him and basically trying to make a joke interview based on how people expect Conor to be. 100% fake, but so wonderful.

... | Reviewer: sp. | 7/22/08

In my opinion the interview is an ironic way for all the stupid interviews that Conor had o probably will have in the future.
All that stupid questions about depression,autobiographical stuff, etc.

The people talking in the background. | Reviewer: molly | 7/5/08

So i turned the volume really high and tried to focus on the people talking in the background. They start talking right after 'conor' says "I like to feel the burn of the audiences eyes while i whisper all my darkest secrets into the micro phone"
I can't tell some of it but heres the bits and pieces:
'Like we're god damn fucking hospital'
'dude it's just we're just a little _notsurewhathesays_ radio fucking bullshit show man'
'who the fuck do they think we are?Like we're recording artists that are puppets man, i mean shit.'
'saddlecreek fucking records. --i don't think it happened man-- i started (jumbles) fucking shit'
'this is bullshit dude'
'this is too fruity with this fucking bright eyes shit about all those fucking new wave groups, the fucking sad sad folk. it's such bullshit'
-at this point i couldn't hear any of the background words but they were laughing and talking some more-
'maybe you wanna think about what your doing in there and who you're fucking with'
'check your fucking mic'

All of this sounded like it was between a friend and Conor. They were laughing and sounded kind of like they were mocking someone in a way. Pretty sure i didn't get most of it right but thats what i deciphered. Go listen and focus on the voices after Conor says the thing about darkest secrets, and compare and whatnot :]

It's definitely a fake interview.

Great Song. | Reviewer: Emerald | 2/7/08

This is one of my fav songs of the whole album.Couldn't tell you why. But there is just so much raw feeling in the song,which is not uncommon is conor's lyrics. The interview is a key commponent to the album,but if your just looking for some good music,this is the song.

lol | Reviewer: getyourkikkkks | 11/18/07

"the interview is totally important.its the key to the album and contains some of the most indepth and carefully considered imagery on the CD.it annoys me how few bright eyes fans rely understand the music."

hahaha. people who really know anything about bright eyes know the whole interview is a joke.
it is conor's friend todd fink from the faint (which conor was in when it was first formed, but quit/got kicked out of)doing the conor impression.

alex you're wrong. | Reviewer: that kid | 11/18/07

of course it contains some of the most indepth and carefully considered imagery on the CD, though it's a laugh. He considered the CD was depressing he thought he'd write something impressive and humerous that exagerates the feelings.
and with your whole getting annoyed with people who don't understand their music.. seriously head butt a bullet, "whatever ails you or oppresses you", make up your own mind on what the songs about and put it towards your most heartfilled moment. I bet you know shit all about the aspect conor's coming from in most of his songs anyway.

do you people know ANYTHING? | Reviewer: Alex | 10/23/07

the interview is totally important.

its the key to the album and contains some of the most indepth and carefully considered imagery on the CD.

it annoys me how few bright eyes fans rely understand the music.

Messy Details | Reviewer: ruby | 9/16/07

Apart from the interview.
The songs incredible, I don't know it's like, though whenever I'm listening to it and the wind blows in from my bedroom window all this pleasure saturates me.
And when like someone in my family starts knocking on my door. I just ignore them, it's like nothing is heard by his music, it's just a chilling ambience. Pretty much towards all his songs.
Conors amazing.
The interview made me laugh, no I idea who it really is. i figured that he states the meaning at first, like the mirrors and fevers and then whoever it is exaggerates it all.
he's good at comparing things, I'm not saying from the interview i just mean in his lyrics. Or like merging different aspects, like with the scales mainly.

Yeah.. It's great.

Messy Details | Reviewer: ruby | 9/16/07

Apart from the interview.
The songs incredible, I don't know it's like.. whenever I'm listening to it and the wind blows in from my bedroom window all this pleasure saturates me.
And when like someone in my family starts knocking on my door. I just ignore them, it's like nothing is heard but the music, it's just a chilling ambience. Pretty much towards all his songs.
Conors amazing.
The interview made me laugh, no I idea who it really is. i figured that he states the meaning at first, like the mirrors and fevers and then whoever it is exaggerates it all.
he's good at comparing things, I'm not saying from the interview i just mean in his lyrics. Or like merging different aspects, like with the scales mainly.

Yeah.. It's great.

Grand | Reviewer: Anonymous | 3/9/07

yeah i love this song, probably my favorite bright eyes song, but yeah, i'm pretty sure it was the guy from the faint doing the interview?

ha | Reviewer: bengisu | 2/9/07

i love the song & the intervire is just HILARIOUS! lol.. first time i listened to it i was like wtf?! he's so cheeky for doing that

Actually... | Reviewer: Brian | 10/17/06

...the RUMOR that you are speaking of is that Todd Baechle of The Faint is doing Conor. One of the people in the backround is supposed to be Conor Oberst.

But you are right. The whole thing was a joke.


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