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High Profile: Sufjan Stevens

By Kathleen Elise posted Oct 07, 2010 at 03:36 PM


Welcome to High Profile, the WVUM feature where we highlight one artist in rotation and give you all the info essential to becoming their next biggest fan. This week’s artist: Sufjan Stevens.

Sufjan (pronounced SOOF-yan) Stevens’ latest release, The Age of Adz, has been creating a bit of a stir. Some love it, some hate it, but at any rate, people are talking about it. Even at WVUM, opinions range from “It’s his best release yet” to “Didn’t he say he was going to nix the electronic stuff?” The general consensus, however, is that at the very least, Age of Adz is rotation worthy—and that’s saying something.


Sufjan Stevens consists of…well, of Sufjan Stevens. He’s a 35-year-old Detroit native (yes, I too thought he was from some distant land with that name) who has an impressive solo career, in addition to having played with many other acts like another WVUM favorite, The National.

Based in…

Brooklyn, New York. Based on the insane amount of music production from in and around Brooklyn, I suggest you invest in some real estate there. (Well, maybe after the market improves.)

Sounds like…

Well, it depends what album you pick up. Enjoy your Rabbit has electronic influences, Seven Swans is more on the lo-fi side, and Illinois is, well, beautiful.


I’ve already mentioned a few (Age of Adz, Enjoy your Rabbit, Seven Swans, Illinois). Age of Adz is most recent, 2000’s A Sun Came is Sufjan’s first full length, and he has approximately a thousand collaborations, appearances in compilations, and singles.



Top Tracks

From Age of Adz, check out “I Walked” and “Too Much” to start off. Listen here.

Odds and Ends

  • The “Adz” in Age of Adz is pronounced “odds.” No, I have no explanation for why this is so.
  • With the 2003 released of his full length Michigan, Sufjan announced his intention to write an album for each of the fifty states. So far, he’s got two down, forty-eight to go. Good luck with that, buddy.
  • If you celebrate Christmas, put away those crooner carols (or if you live in my house, the Muppet Christmas carols) and throw on some Sufjan this December. His Songs for Christmas is a refreshing change from the usual holiday music.

Upcoming Shows

Sufjan will be hitting up Canada and the Midwest in October, as well as the coasts (though no Florida dates) in November.

For more, check out…

Sufjan’s official site

Sufjan’s label, Asthmatic Kitty Records

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