Sufjan Stevens – The Age Of Adz


 

Describing The Age of Adz as more focused and dare I say it, ‘normal’ than Sufjan’s other albums indirectly describes his back catalogue; his eclectic music occupies its own niche as burlesque and theatrical, yet poignant and significant.

The sounds in The B.Q.E took us the bustling American highway and left us there, as did the state’s history crammed into Michigan and Illinoise. The headspace of Adz however, is of heartache and loss; by the end of it we know that Sufjan has matured, as both an artist and a person.

On first impression Adz seemed an uncreative effort, an album that after first listen would normally be shelved as ‘okay, but not brilliant’. Yet lyrically, Sufjan is at his most personal and honest; a more O.T.T. effort would distract us from this. Futile de Vices states that ‘I do, still love you’ and Too Much claims ‘I’ll try love, I want to see it’. The screaming of ‘I’m not fucking around’ in I Want To Be Well confirms the lyrics significance. Sufjan has fallen out of love, either with God or a Woman. Maybe both.

Adz will work in delighting everyone. Enthusiasts will enjoy the lyrics in the deceptively simple tracks. Newbies will find it accessible and easy listening, a good way to start their exploration of the enigma that is ‘Sufjan’.
Persist with this one, its awesome.

4 ½ stars out of 5.

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