Sufjan Stevens – Illinoise

Sufjan Stevens’ Illinoise is a touching album, rich in American history. It is just a small part of his huge United States project which sees him writing an albuim for every state of America. Almost impossible and you’d be sure that the quality of each album would decline with age. Luckily this, his second of what is it? 52…is brilliant. His acoustic folk approach has a quirky edge with horn sections, string arrangments and obscure instrumentation. However Sufjan is at his best with either just him and a guitar or piano – Standouts like John Wayne Gacy Jr are¬†haunting or severely depressing (see Casimir Pulaski Day) tell stories of real life happenings that hit hard at home, but that doesnt mean the albumdoesn’t have its lighter, more upbeat moments.

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