I love this album in that I can relate to many of the themes within it. I usually never tear up to music, but this is one of those albums that I can do just that - catharsis. Sufjan Stevens never fails to impress me!
Favorite track: Eugene.
Not my favorite Sufjan release (I still prefer the two states albums), but it is his most emotional and lyrical. I like the grandiose nature of some of his other releases, but there's always room in my heart for a more stripped-back, personal record. For a person as complicated as Carrie, this was a great way to honor her as she truly was. It's sad, but life is sad, and there's little else out there as comforting as this.
Favorite track: Fourth of July.
In "Carrie and Lowell," Sufjan Stevens is a child again or, more specifically, the child character in the family of man drama that often but not always centers on the story of love given, or love forsaken, but isn't that the same thing to the poet? That the love Stevens sings about having left or given or been born to--thank you, Carrie--is a perceptible wound not only on the singer's throat, but his sleeve: he wears love's incomprehensibility, and the deep incomprehensibility of being a son, like a backing vocal on "Carrie and Lowell," which is also filled with colors, hearts, trees, conclusions, and beginnings, all adding up to the kind of intimacy that caught my eye the morning I sat in the diner waiting for the sun to get stronger as I saw intimacy pass by while going about it's business, like something sung and felt by Sufjan Stevens on his new beautiful solitary and rich record filled with faith and disbelief and the resurrection of trust and dreams. - HILTON ALS
Flora, Portland, Oregon (engineered by Tucker Martine)
Black Watch, Norman, Oklahoma (engineered by Chad Copelin and Jarod Evans)
April Base, Eau Claire, Wisconsin (engineered by Brian Joseph)
Pat Dillet’s studio somewhere midtown Manhattan
And at Sufjan’s office in Dumbo, Brooklyn
Some tracks were also recorded on an iPhone in a hotel room in Klamath Falls, Oregon
Mixed by Sufjan Stevens, Thomas Bartlett, and Pat Dillet