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Michigan

18 customer reviews

Price: £14.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over £20. Details
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Music

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Biography

The Age of Adz (pronounced odds) is Sufjan Stevens’ first full-length collection of original songs since 2005’s civic pop opus Illinois. This new album is probably his most unusual, first, for its lack of conceptual underpinnings, and second, for its preoccupation with Sufjan himself. The album relinquishes the songwriter’s former story-telling techniques for more primal ... Read more in Amazon's Sufjan Stevens Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Michigan + Illinoise + SEVEN SWANS
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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Jan. 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Rough Trade Records
  • ASIN: B0001Z2TKI
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 33,333 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 15 July 2007
Format: Audio CD
Even though I usually stick to the coasts, I'll always have a place in my heart for Michigan -- I was born there, after all.

It also happens to be the first album in Sufjan Stevens' proposed fifty-state-album project, "Greetings From Michigan: The Great Lake State." Stevens' mellow indie-folk rules the album with a gentle hand, from sprightly folkpop to banjo balladry -- and it's as fun as it is complex and alluring.

It opens with a gentle piano, joined in by a chorus of horns. "It's the same outside/Driving to the riverside/I pretend to cry/Even if I cried alone," Stevens murmurs, embodying a worker who isn't working. Despite its simplicity, it's packed with self-trickery and windy dissatisfaction. "I forgot the part/Use my hands to use my heart/Even if I died alone..."

Then the tone totally changes with "All Good Naysayers, Speak Up! Or Forever Hold Your Peace," a sprightly little pop tune, and the folky banjo of "For The Windows In Paradise, For The Fatherless In Ypsilanti." From there, he tries out variations of all his folky talents -- dreamlike folkpop, swaying wistful folk, sparkling xylophone, guitar ballads, and steady pipe organs leading into a bluesy ballad.

But the best songs of all are when Stevens combines all his musical influences into one enormous joyous mass of sound -- "Detroit, Lift Up Your Weary Head! (Rebuild! Restore! Reconsider!)" is a glorious mishmash of pop, xylophone, piano, horns and folky interludes, blended into a great soaring epic. So is the luminous "They Also Mourn Who Do Not Wear Black (For The Homeless In Muskegon).
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By M. A. Fraser on 3 Sept. 2006
Format: Audio CD
This deserves its top rating based on sheer durability. I never seem to tire of it, particularly for late night listening. The 75 minute sequence (the average for a Sufjan CD!) seems effortless, the quality never dips, every song justifying its place, and each is a highlight in its own way.

If you've heard Illinoise, this CD is similar but mellower, and because Michigan is Sufjan's home state the songs are more personal.

Best time to listen: Late at night
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 1 May 2005
Format: Audio CD
There's nothing like Sufjans Stevens' music. Greetings from Michigan is indescribably heartfelt and emotional, with such a varied set of songs all of which come together to create a beautifully diverse yet themed album. Whether or not you even get what he's on about most the time (his lyrics are fairly difficult to comprehend out of context) the music here speaks volumes. For me, Stevens triumphs particularly in the arrangements of his songs, often very simple, never messy, unnecessary or unwelcome. A beautifully crafted album.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By G on 9 Mar. 2004
Format: Audio CD
i was recommended this by a friend, someone who knew i liked beck,sparklehorse and others that can never really be shoehorned into a genre.
Im still not sure if this is lo-fi,indie,rock or jazz? its all a bit confusing at first listen especially when that listen is about 1h 10mins, yeah, its an epic.
I first thought it was 'interesting', but after a week ive heard nothing else, i love it, best thing ive heard this year.
The tunes on here are the heroes, bags of emotion and melody, if you like the pace and melody of sparklehorse then you're in for a treat, theres banjos-a-pleanty, acoustic guitar, fragile vocals sometimes with a female harmony. Each song sounds important as it seems to tell of some major event concerning relationships, leaving the listener identifying with most.
Sufjan has his box of musical tricks which include,.. english horn/recorder/xylophone/glockenspiel, all of which he plays himself.
This album will never chart, but could break the hearts of those who buy it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Wild lass on 21 Nov. 2008
Format: Audio CD
An album full of beautiful tracks full of many instruments. I have never heard anything like this - Sufjan Stevens takes instruments we have become accustomed to hearing in certain genres, and uses them to create fantastic, rich sounds. The subject matters of the songs are covered from a childlike, frank perspective. Listening to this has set me on the hunt for his other albums...
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful By J. Taylor on 5 July 2005
Format: Audio CD
At first listen, I began to panic that I had purchased a dud. However, before I'd even had the chance to play it again, many of the tracks repeated in my head and found a place to settle there.
The album requires a little more effort than usual, simply because it works as a cohesive whole, instead of the sum of so many parts. There are few 'singles' here, but an inventive collection of songs that really do complement each other. I have never been to Michigan but have been offered a sense of place and spirit by this abum that is rewarding and grows with each listen. His affectionate but unsentimental vision of Michigan is communicated with sincerity and heart. Some individual tracks did not grab me but they all contribute to the bigger picture - the journey.
The harmony of instruments, that could have led to a cacophany in less capable hands, makes the album rich but mellow. Each song is different but they clearly all belong. The feeling of travelling through a space - geographical or emotional - making various stops along the way, is an elegant idea. Sufjan Stevens manages to execute it extremely well. I've ordered Seven Swans on the strength of this. Because of the considerable flair and originality of 'Michigan', I don't expect to be disappointed.
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