Sufjan Stevens - All Delighted People (Asthmatic Kitty)

08 Sep 2010

“it’s eleven minutes long.  that’s obscene...”; release – 2010


The title track from Sufjan Stevens’ newest EP 'All Delighted People' is 11 minutes long. How obscene. If this fact alone doesn't allow you to check the box for ‘Godspeed You! Black Emperor fashioned epic-ness’ on that new fangled “music enthusiast listening checklist” app downloaded onto your iPad, then the sonic pilgrimage on which Sufjan's gorgeous new offering transports you certainly will.

'All Delighted People' really is a track of symphonic proportions, but the numerous “movements” of the song prevent its length becoming an issue. The eerie, hushed choir (of children?) at the song's opening- calling to mind The Antlers’ 'Hospice' or a Tim Burton soundtrack- quickly metamorphoses into a piece of desert-music balladeering complete with muted trumpets (hooray!). The tension of the bursts of intermittent noise and drums throughout the track is offset against the uplifting string arrangements and identifiably honest, seemingly cathartic outpouring of Mr. Stevens- 'yeah I know I'm still afraid / of letting go of choices I have made' and 'I tried my best / I tried in vain / the world is a mess'- to devastating effect.

Fittingly, Sufjan asks his listeners, 'what difference does it make / if the world is a mess?' 'All Delighted People' is a song with a rare life-affirming quality, which could keep you in high-spirits even if the world around was falling to pieces; it truly does tick all the boxes.

Sufjan Stevens - All Delighted People (Original Version)

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