Since the review I wrote a couple weeks ago about Sufjan Stevens’ new album “Age of Adz” (Click here to read) I haven’t listened to anything else! A bit enthralled you could say. So last week when I sat down to write another music review I was at a loss , because I literally wasn’t listening to anything else.
Then with the holiday season upon us I was trying to find some music to fit the christmas spirit and still offers the inspiration. And finally I remembered that Sufjan Stevens released Christmas music in 2006! So as you can guess I’ve been listening to that like crazy and it’s perfect. Somehow it manages to feel like Sufjan AND Christmas at the same time! Do you need good Christmas music from someone other than the Rat Pack and Nat King Cole? This is it.
This massive 5 disc box set “Sufjan Stevens presents Songs for Christmas” is genuine. Holding the gravity of a holiday season that has become so glossy and fake in mainstream culture. This is a season of joy and pain, loss and sorrow, promise and hope. And this collection of songs will take you through all of those emotions. They won’t leave you with that plastic, over merchandised feeling, you get from the barrage of holiday marketing. Doesn’t it seem obvious that we want to hear music that is equally moving as is the holiday it was made for? And we don’t want to listen to hokey covers of the same christmas songs over and over again! This season truly effects all people and Sufjan’s Christmas music will truly effect you. I’m constantly amazed at Sufjan’s sound and his ability to orchestrate emotion into music.
Thanks for reading and I hope you have a warm holiday. Love and peace.
PS – We’re giving you a brand new song this weekend for you’re holiday mix tape. It’s not a “Christmas Song” but when Steven and I wrote it we said it felt like the Christmas/New Years Holiday season vibe. So look for the new song on Dec. 4, 2010!
Sufjan appears to be doing what he wants, when he wants. He’s that guy that can make the most ridiculous things make sense. His new full length album “Age of Adz” is something to be revolutionized by. This album seems to be a dissertation that he has submitted to the world, presenting research and findings on his internal state of being. He completely changed his traditional sound aesthetic, like he was trying to create something that wouldn’t be confused with his previous albums. (Click here to read the details of his inspiration) This is a huge album for Sufjan Stevens like Sgt. Peppers was for The Beatles. “The Age of Adz” has no listener sensitive restrictions. The last track is over 25 minutes long!! It has no boundaries or safe zone. It will be loved and hated.
I’ve heard all the grandiose stories of Sufjan’s live show and even my highest expectations were surpassed with no challenge! He took the stage in Asheville at the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium in angels wings for one song and then performed an onstage costume change into the likes of Vanilla Ice and New Kids On The Block. He described his band as “hippies in space”! His pants were silver with silver streamers coming out of the pockets and at one point in the concert he wore a visor with flashing lights over the bill. He adorned his face and arms with neon green glow-in-the-dark tape like it was native american war paint and with the same tape wrote “Icy Hot” on his electric guitar. Though the show was presented lightheartedly by Sufjan, it was not a joke. He’s back after 5 years and it is evident in his appearance and sound that he has reinvented himself, for himself.
Posted below is a video I recorded at Sufjan Stevens’ show in Asheville on Nov. 7, 2010. I’d rather you see it live but this video will be a small taste. You’ve got to know that this video doesn’t even come close to translating in actuality how great this show was!! What do you think about Sufjan’s new music? Live show? If you were at the show in Asheville let me know what you thought. (leave comments below)