Sufjan Stevens is like that distant friend who’s always shifting from city to city, job to job, girlfriend to girlfriend, girlfriend to boyfriend. You get the chance to catch up once a year, around the holidays, but the rest of the year’s a toss up.
I am not friends with Sufjan Stevens. But when you compare the peaceful banjo and lyrics of a song like “He Woke Me Up Again” (Seven Swans: 2004), to the video game electro-madness of Enjoy Your Rabbit (2001), to the symphonic ode to a highway (The BQE: 2009), it makes you wonder if your old friend still knows Jesus and if he’s going to remember to call you on your birthday this year.
Enter Sufjan’s latest: The Age of Adz (2010). It combines the Hallelujah’s of “He Woke Me Up Again” with the spastic synth jabs of Enjoy Your Rabbit (2001). And it’s freakin’ great.