Monday, March 23, 2015

Sufjan Stevens

I'm posting a lot;

http://www.npr.org/2015/03/22/393575866/first-listen-sufjan-stevens-carrie-lowell

This is insane. I was just playing Sufjan Stevens yesterday to N, showing him a live performance of Casimir Pulaski Day, and today I learn that Sufjan is releasing a new album. And immediately I streamed the entire thing (link above). His music isn't for everyone - it's extremely stripped down indie folk, and carries a heaviness (especially in this album) that makes you furrow your eyebrows and just kind of empty all thoughts, in a non-pretentious way. I don't listen to such music to pretend that I'm a cool kid, I genuinely think it's great music, with great lyrics that I can connect with.

This is his description though of the album, which may seem a bit more pretentious:

"Carrie & Lowell sounds like memory: it spans decades yet does not trade on pastiche or nostalgia. Stevens’s gauzy double-tracked vocals wash across the dashboard of long-finned, drop-top Americana, yet as we race towards the coast we are reminded that sunshine leads to shadow, for this is a landscape of terminal roads, unsteady bridges, traumatic video stores, and unhappy beds that provide the scenery for tales of jackknifed cars, funerals, and forgiveness for the dead. Each track in this collection of eleven songs begins with a fragile melody that gathers steam until it becomes nothing less than a modern hymn. Sufjan recounts the indignities of our world, of technological distraction and sad sex, of an age without either myths or miracle—and this time around, his voice carries the burden of wisdom. Carrie & Lowell accomplishes the rare thing that any art should achieve, particularly in these noisy and fragmented days: By seeking to understand, Sufjan makes us feel less alone."



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