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Old 05-21-2015, 11:38 PM   #226
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Yeah it seems to have struck a chord in that regard with a few people. I didn't mean to imply people were wrong/stupid for having it as their favourite or anything. Just that it hasn't resonated as strongly with me.

I will totally agree with your second sentence, though, definitely. There's something in every song that makes me nod my head. As several have pointed out the ambient outros are really something.
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Old 05-22-2015, 08:42 AM   #227
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Might listen to Michigan this arvo.
I'll probably be in the minority here, but I prefer Michigan to Illinois(e). More poignant and more focused IMO.
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Old 05-22-2015, 09:07 AM   #228
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I am just about to listen to it. With a maple-flavoured bourbon and coke. Will report back soon.
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Old 05-22-2015, 10:43 AM   #229
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Rest in my arms. Sleep in my bed. There's a design. To what I did and said.

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Old 05-22-2015, 11:14 AM   #230
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I like Michigan a good deal, but I don't think it has the songs that Illinoise has. I find UFO, John Wayne Gacy, Chicago and Casimir Pulaski Day are better than anything in Michigan, even though the latter is a bit more consistent.
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Old 05-22-2015, 01:41 PM   #231
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Yeah it seems to have struck a chord in that regard with a few people.

I feel certain I'd still love it very, very much without the personal connection but that connection probably did push it to another level for me.

I feel The Only Thing doesn't get enough love.


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Old 05-23-2015, 07:46 AM   #232
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Guys, tomorrow morning (at 6:45am ) I am flying to Sydney with a girl I have had a huge crush on for like a year to see Sufjan Stevens. I'm nervous, excited, anxious, can't wait

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I like Michigan a good deal, but I don't think it has the songs that Illinoise has. I find UFO, John Wayne Gacy, Chicago and Casimir Pulaski Day are better than anything in Michigan, even though the latter is a bit more consistent.
I thought Vito's Ordination Song, Romulus, Holland, Upper Peninsula, Tahquenetcetc Falls, They Also Mourn... were all really good. Four albums I've heard now, and they're all really really good. Ridiculous.

I actually did hear Age of Adz when it came out, in true Cobbler style I downloaded it having not heard any of his other work, I recall getting a couple of songs in and turning it off

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Well, my mom died a few years ago, and we had a difficult relationship, so it was a given that this record would totally wreck me.

I think every song on it has something special going on - a lyric, a vocal, a chord change, an instrument, something, that just gets me.
Cases in point: the chimes/synths/shimmery guitar/whatever it is in the background of Blue Bucket of Gold, "I want to save you from your sorrow" in The Only Thing, the piano in John My Beloved.

I like every song. All of Me Wants All of You is another brilliant song.
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Old 05-23-2015, 08:18 AM   #233
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Originally Posted by cobl04 View Post
Guys, tomorrow morning (at 6:45am ) I am flying to Sydney with a girl I have had a huge crush on for like a year to see Sufjan Stevens. I'm nervous, excited, anxious, can't wait



Cases in point: the chimes/synths/shimmery guitar/whatever it is in the background of Blue Bucket of Gold, "I want to save you from your sorrow" in The Only Thing, the piano in John My Beloved.



I like every song. All of Me Wants All of You is another brilliant song.

Well, that's the sweetest thing! Sufjan whispering "We're all gonna die" might not be exactly the most romantic thing in the world but you could have an intense and bonding experience together. What a lucky girl.

I hope he comes back around to somewhere near me. I had a ticket for his last tour but broke a toe the day before the show and couldn't drive to Denver.

It's "I want to save you from your sorrow" and what happens immediately following that line that kills me. I crank it up in the car every time.

All of Me was the song that first drew me in on the NPR stream.


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Old 05-25-2015, 07:08 AM   #234
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So Sufjan was just phenomenal. Was at the Sydney Opera House (which is obviously impressive from the outside but it's not much different to any old concert hall inside imo). Huge room, but right from the outset that didn't seem to matter. The crowd was very respectful, clapping at the end of songs and cheering but never interrupting during songs.

The setlist:

 
Redford
Death With Dignity
Shoulda Known Better
Drawn to the Blood
All of Me Wants All of You
Eugene
John My Beloved
The Only Thing
Fourth of July
No Shade in the Shadow of the Cross
Carrie & Lowell
Owl and the Tanager
In the Devil's Territory
Heirloom
Futile Devices
That Dress Looks Nice On You
Blue Bucket of Gold

Concerning the UFO Sighting...
Casimir Pulaski Day
Palisades
Chicago


I sometimes get edgy when artists play slow, quiet songs in big venues but I need not have worried at all. It was just Sufjan on piano for the first song, and then a seriously impressive run where he played the new album very nearly in full AND in the correct order, something I've never really experienced before. As gump mentioned All of Me Wants All of You has been completely reworked and it sounds terrific. All the songs sounded really good (how quietly intense is the ending to John My Beloved?! "In a matter of speaking, I'm dead", and then it just cuts out. Also Eugene, which is maybe my least favourite on the record, was really nice) and those ambient outros were just fantastic. The aesthetics were great as well. We were a long way back but there was a drummer, two, sometimes three guitarists and a horns man. He had about eight lengthy diamond-shaped screens which showed alternately colours and footage I assume from his childhood. I must make special mention of Fourth of July, which might be the song of the year, and it was just. fucking. amazing. Really fucking takes off with the addition of drums as well, you get this incredible mix of "we're all gonna die" as it is on the album, hushed and haunting, and then barely audible underneath a mountain of noise.

Up next were a series of songs I didn't know (aside from In the Devil's Territory, which was fucking great, love that song), none of which particularly took my fancy on the night (I was also a combination of tired, having been up since 5am, had just pretty much skolled a glass of merlot and I was also a bit bummed about some personal manners) but all of which were good.

Then came what was undoubtedly the highlight of the night - Blue Bucket of Gold. I already liked the song but I just can't do justice with words about how fucking mindblowing this performance was. It extends out to about 10 minutes and just absolutely roars into a monstrous crescendo, and it was fucking spectacular with the lights - there were disco balls behind the long diamond screens and those combined with the stage lights combined with the amazing sounds coming from stage was just something else. The song absolutely destroyed me, in more ways than one, and has taken on a new meaning that really sucks and is strangely comforting at the same time. I know he's talking about his mum on this album, but the great thing about lyrics is you're kinda free to read into them whatever you like.

The encore was all songs from Illinoise. UFO Sighting is a great song, I don't think he quite played the whole thing but it was very good. Casimir Pulaski Day was great in how quiet it was for much of it. Also a great song. When he introduced Palisades he was like "I was gonna play another song about death" and everyone lol'd and then he introduced it saying it was a song about flying objects and I got super excited thinking it might be Man of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts, but the disappointment didn't last long as Palisades is great too. He closed with Chicago... weirdly, since it was the first song of his that I really went "man this is great" I actually wouldn't have been shattered if he didn't play it. He played Sister the night before and I would have killed for that song. Still, it sounded great and was an awesome way to end a really excellent show. Everyone who has seen him is right, he is so very good and I am so happy that I got into him a few months ago.
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Old 05-25-2015, 07:24 AM   #235
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I might do a Rushmore now.

Sister / Vito's Ordination Song / Fourth of July / The Man of Metropolis Steals Our Hearts
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Old 05-25-2015, 08:35 AM   #236
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Great post.

I'm jealous as I missed out on tickets to see him later this year.
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Old 05-25-2015, 08:55 AM   #237
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Glad you enjoyed it, cobbler. Blue Bucket of Gold really was something else. Best moment of the show by far.

Shame you didn't get Sister, but Casimir Pulaski Day is a good replacement and fits, thematically, I guess.
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Old 05-25-2015, 09:04 AM   #238
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Sounds like a great show, Cobbz.
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Old 05-25-2015, 10:08 AM   #239
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Joyful, did you see this?

The Uncool Connection Between Sufjan Stevens and Tori Amos | The Pitch | Pitchfork
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Old 05-25-2015, 08:33 PM   #240
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I was out of town when he was in Chicago. All these comments about the show are making that hurt all the more.
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