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The Ascension

by Sufjan Stevens

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R Roeswood
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R Roeswood This feels less like an album and more like a cosmic event. I can't stop listening to this deeply textured, gorgeous, spacious experience. Possibly the best from Sufjan yet and in contention for my favorite album of all time. Favorite track: Landslide.
jaroslaw1981
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jaroslaw1981 Absolutely stunning. Growing with each next listening. Thank you! Favorite track: Run Away With Me.
Evan Straubel
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Evan Straubel This album is a very different direction for Sufjan, but it does a lot of borrowing from his earlier work at the same time, The listening experience can be extremely depressing or empowering, which shows the range of the album's moods. Some of the lyrics are very simple, other songs are ambiguous and complex. I will be listening to this a ton this year. Thanks Sufjan!
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  • Compact Disc (CD) + Digital Album

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  • 2xLP black vinyl
    Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

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  • First-pressing 2xLP clear vinyl
    Record/Vinyl + Digital Album

    Includes 2xLP in clear vinyl, tip-on gatefold jacket, and 16-page booklet of original drawings by Sufjan Stevens.
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1.
Move me Move like the waters I cannot drink I have lost my patience Make me an offer I cannot refuse Move through to me Show me the face of all of my dreams Was it all for nothing? Make me an offer I cannot refuse Move through to me Move like the ghost of a hazardous demon Was it all forgiven? Make me an offer I cannot refuse Move like a centipede Foolish as I am, follow my lead I have lost my preference Make me an offer I cannot refuse Move through to me Show me the face of the radical dream There’s no time for innocence Make me an offer I cannot refuse Shall you refuse me? Show me the face of the radical dream There’s no time for severance Make me an offer I cannot refuse Shall you abuse me? Show me the grace of a natural king Lord,I need deliverance Make me an offer I cannot refuse Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion,Tempest, electric guitar,Prophet 08, Prophet 6, Prophet X, vocals Casey Foubert: bass guitar* and vibraphone* Bryce Dessner: electric guitar Emil Nikolaisen: black magic
2.
“RUN AWAY WITH ME” © 2020 Sufjan Stevens Music/ASCAP Chorus... And I say love Come run away with me Sweet falling remedy Come run away with me And I say love Come run away with me Sweet falling fantasy Come run away with me And I say love They will terrorize us With new confusion With the fear of life that seeks to bring despair within And they will paralyze us With new illusions Let the dead revive the beast within Chorus... And I will bring you life A new communion With a paradise that brings the truth of light within And I will show you rapture A new horizon Follow me to life and love within Chorus... Come run away with me You’re all I ever need Come run away And I say love Come run away with me You’re all I ever need Come run away And I say love Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, piano, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, vocals Casey Foubert: electric guitar
3.
04:15
I don’t wanna be your personal Jesus I don’t wanna live inside of that flame In a way I wanna be my own believer I don’t wanna play your video game I don’t wanna be the center of the universe I don’t wanna be a part of that shame In a way I wanna be my own redeemer I don’t wanna play your video game I don’t care if everybody else is into it I don’t care if it’s a popular refrain I don’t wanna be a puppet in a theater I don’t wanna play your video game You don’t wanna be the one who has to pay for it You don’t wanna be the one who has to change All you want is what the resumé tells you I don’t wanna play your video game Chorus... I don’t wanna play, I don’t wanna play (I just wanna go away) I don’t wanna play your video game I don’t wanna love you if won’t receive it I don’t wanna save the world that way I don’t wanna be your personal Jesus I don’t wanna play your video game I don’t wanna put the devil on a pedestal I don’t wanna put the saints in chains I just wanna make my life a little easier I don’t wanna play your video game Chorus... I don’t wanna be your Julius Caesar I don’t want it to go down that way But in a way you gotta follow the procedure So go ahead and play your video game Chorus...
4.
03:42
© 2020 SUFJAN STEVENS MUSIC/ASCAP Take me into all of your life I am the future, define the future I was only thinking of human kindness I am the future, define the future I have always wanted to be here with you Love me the first time, love me the last time Something that Iwanted to see through with you I am the future, define the future Is this the way you make me ask for something more? Is this the reason why you walk back to the door? You wanna rebel but you hold yourself indecision And something tells me that you gave it all up over division Take me into all of your lifetime I am the future, define the future Take me into all of your lasting lifetime I am the future, define the future I was only thinking of human kindness Love me the first time, love me the last time Take me into all of your lamentations I am the future, define the future Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, Prophet X, vocals Casey Foubert: electric guitar James McAlister: additional drums and percussion* and vocal cut-up effects*
5.
“TELL ME YOU LOVE ME” © 2020 SUFJAN STEVENS MUSIC/ASCAP My love, I’ve lost my faith in everything Tell me you love me anyway Tell me you love me My love, I feel myself unraveling Tell me you love me anyway Tell me you love me My love, I feel the darkness on my back Something inside me like a wave Tell me you love me Right now I could use a change of heart Or a kiss before everything falls apart Can you tell me this love will last forever? And as the world turns making such a mess What’s the point of it when everything’s dispossessed? Can we carry this love across the desert? My love, I wish I was a photograph Perfect and lovely in a frame Tell me you love me My love, my life could be an epitaph Something to write upon my grave Tell me you love me Right now I could use a change of plans When it all falls, what’s the use of open hands? Can you tell me this love will last forever? And as the world burns breathing in the blight What’s the point of it if morning turns into night? Can we carry this love? It’s now or never I’m gonna love you. I’m gonna love you every day. Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, electric guitar, piano, vocals Casey Foubert: bass guitar James McAlister: additional drums and percussion*
6.
05:46
“DIE HAPPY” © 2020 SUFJAN STEVENS MUSIC/ASCAP I wanna die happy I wanna die happy I wanna die happy I wanna die happy I wanna die happy I wanna die happy I wanna die happy I wanna die happy etc. Sufjan Stevens : drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, vocals Casey Foubert: electric guitar* James McAlister: additional drums and percussion*
7.
06:32
“ATIVAN” © 2020 SUFJAN STEVENS MUSIC/ASCAP I woke up in stereo— I spent the day in vertigo I could not get the spirit off my back Put my feelings on the table Eat my heart out if you’re able Separate the fever from the fact So much for the afterglow I feel just like an embryo I take it out before you put it back Put my head between my knees I search myself for all disease I separate the bottle from the cap Chorus... Is all for something? Is it all part of a plan? Tranquilize me, sanitize me,Ativan (My leading woman) Is all for nothing? Is it all part of a plan? Make my wish list, mind my business Do the best I can (with what I am) Caught up in the baby’s breath I shit my pants and wet the bed It takes some time to throw the demons off Put the lotion in the basket Now jump off the overpass It takes some time before the skin comes off Fill me with the blood of Jesus Clean my plate ‘til he receives us Separate the colors from the black Shut the shades to make it prosper Cut your face to make it softer Tell the shadows near us to come back Chorus... Is all for nothing? Is it all part of a plan? Tranquilize me and revise me, Ativan (My leading woman) Is it all full circle? Is it all part of a plan? Make my death wish, mind my business I’m doing the best I can (with what I am) Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, Prophet X, electric guitar, vocals Casey Foubert : electric guitar Emil Nikolaisen: black magic
8.
03:42
“URSA MAJOR” © 2020 SUFJAN STEVENS MUSIC/ASCAP For the love of God In the shade of Ursa Major For the life of me I can’t account for human nature For your information I’m not one for controversy So I ask forgiveness now Lord, reveal yourself in mercy Call off all emergency And look at thing things the way I see them For the beauty of the earth It shows us wisdom, love and rebirth Chorus... I wanna love you, I wanna love you Until the earth runs through it I wanna love you, I wanna love you And I’m definitely gonna do it For the love of mercy In the face of all this danger For the most of all my life I feel as if I were a stranger And all the consequences From the throes of our persuasion Lord, I ask for patience now Call off all of your invasion There is beauty where I see it Everywhere that I can feel it I am on the verge of sorrow Tell me, lord, which road to follow Chorus... Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, Prophet X, vocals Casey Foubert: bass guitar
9.
05:04
“LANDSLIDE” © 2020 SUFJAN STEVENS MUSIC/ASCAP It was something of a second life It was something of an anaphylaxis I saw the same shit, I saw the light You get me out of this and I’ll give you access At the risk of sounding like a Confucian I saw your body and I saw what I liked Let’s keep it simple, give me absolution Let’s take walk in the circle of light It was something of an afterthought It was something sort of unprecedented I saw the same shit, like it or not I saw the hemisphere, I didn’t invent it It was something of a reinvention You took my breath away, Itook my time Let’s keep it simple, give me absolution Let’s take walk in the circle of light Chorus: We step in the light The rise of the tide My love is a wave You got me caught in a landslide There’s nowhere to run There’s nowhere to hide My love is a wave You got me caught in a landslide It was something of a second chance It was something of a phantom synapsis Now everything is slipping out of my hands You get me out of this and I’ll give you access At the risk of sounding like a Confucian I’m gonna take it one day at a time Let’s keep it simple, give me absolution Let’s take walk in the circle of light Chorus... Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, electric guitar, vocals Casey Foubert: lead electric guitar, bass guitar
10.
03:50
“GILGAMESH” © 2020 Sufjan Stevens Music/ASCAP Four degrees off the ground I am lost, forgive me Four degrees off the ground I am lost, forgive me. (Only the lonely) Reach out for what remains before you Reach out for what remains at hand For as it was in the beginning So shall it cease at my command (Only the lonely) Now place your head below your waistline Breathe deeply as the pain subsides And with your final breath remember The day of rest has now arrived (only the lonely) Oh my heart will leave you now, surrender Oh my heart receives you now With arms full of harvest Oh my heart has fallen for its fear of feelings Stay close to me my love Theosophy, in elegy love me Oh my heart will fantasize of Eden My love, my dream, make love to me surrender your spirit, sing my eulogy Oh my heart is chained to thee, my angel You haven’t seen the last of me My love, I give you everything Four degrees off the ground I am lost without you (only the lonely) Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, electric guitar,recorders, vocals Casey Foubert: lead electric guitar
11.
04:04
“DEATH STAR” © 2020 Sufjan Stevens Music/ASCAP Death star into space Trash talk, violate it What you call the human race Go on wipe that look off your face Death star into space Trash talk, violate it Witness me resist the hate It’s your own damn head on that plate Death star into space Vandalize what you create Trash talk, violate it Go on wipe that look off your face Death star into space What you call the human race Expedite the judgment day It’s your own damn head on that plate Death star into space Watch me now and take the bait Battle star, cannot fake it Go on let the future deflate Death star into space What you call the human race Witness me, resist the hate It’s your own damn head on that plate Death star into space Trash talk, violate it Vandalize what you create It’s your own damn head on that plate Death star into space What you call the human race Witness me resist your fate It’s your own damn head on that plate Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, Prophet X, electric guitar, vocals Casey Foubert: electric guitar, bass guitar
12.
“GOODBYE TO ALL THAT” © 2020 Sufjan Stevens Music/ASCAP (I’m your ticket tonight...) Here I am alone in my car Hopelessness incorporated I’m driving to wherever you are Now that all of my dreams have been confiscated Circa 1975 Now that it’s too late to have died a young man Well I’m just glad that I’m still alive For what hasn’t killed me will make me stronger Chorus... Goodbye to that Goodbye to all of that artifact Goodbye to that Goodbye to all of that artifact Tell me what I already know Nothing is left of me, all of this is vertigo Turn around and show me your shadow Now that I’ve left you I feel all the afterglow Chorus... Goodbye to that Goodbye to all of that artifact Goodbye to that Goodbye to all of that artifact Goodbye to everything out of whack Here I am alone in my car Hopelessly infatuated Now I’m driving to wherever you are Love me and leave me intoxicated Chorus... Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, vocals Casey Foubert: bass guitar
13.
07:36
Is someone gonna cut me some slack? Now that it’s a quarter to ten Come on baby gimme some sugar You tell me that you wanna fall back But I don’t wanna do this again Come on baby gimme some sugar Stand up straight now stand real tall And wipe that writing off the wall This is the right time Come on baby gimme some sugar Now put one foot in front of the other Take a breath now breathe, my lover Let’s take up this lifeline Come on baby gimme some sugar Is that the weight of the world on your back? Surrender with that colorful flag Come on baby gimme some sugar Yeah they’ve been selling us this fiction as fact But I don’t wanna lose you again Come on baby gimme some sugar Chorus... Don’t make me wait Don’t make me wait too long Don’t make sing the sad song Come on baby gimme some sugar All the shit they try to feed us Don’t drink the poison or they’ll defeat us This is the right time Come on baby gimme some sugar Don’t break my heart, don’t break my flow now And all this rage has got to go now Let’s take up this lifeline Come on baby gimme some sugar Chorus... Sufjan Stevens: drums and percussion, Tempest, Prophet 08, Prophet 6, Prophet X, electric guitar, vocals Casey Foubert: bass guitar
14.
“THE ASCENSION” © 2020 Sufjan Stevens Music/ASCAP When I am dead and the light leaves my breast Nothing to be told, nothing to confess Let the record show what I couldn’t quite confess For by living for myself I was living for unrest Then the evidence came back In a chariot of vindication Something to behold,glorious in its path But the prophecy fell back as it gave to me an invitation Show them what is right, show them what is blessed Chorus... But now it strikes me far too late again That I was asking far too much of everyone around me And now it strikes me far too late again That I should answer for myself as the Ascension falls upon me So what should be said of a life that leaves its mess? For once your life was sold it could never be possessed You were selfishly as a continent, you were finally at your best For you favored for yourself when selfishness was blessed Then Cordelia came back in a chariot hallucination Something to rejoice, glorious in its wrath But the prophecy was a pantomime as came to me in accusation Show them what is right, show them what is best Chorus... But now it strikes me far too late again That I was asking far too much of everyone around me And now it strikes me far too late again That I should answer for myself as the Ascension falls upon me And now it frightens me, the thought against my chest To think I was asking for a reason Explaining why everything’s a total mess And now it frightens me, the dreams dreams that I possess To think I was acting like a believer When I was just angry and depressed And to everything there is no meaning A season of pain and hopelessness I shouldn’t have looked for revelation I should have resigned myself to this I thought I could change the world around me I thought I could change the world for best I thought I was called in convocation I thought I was sanctified and blessed But now it strengthens me to know the truth at last That everything comes from consummation And everything comes with consequence And I did it all with exultation While you did it all with hopelessness Yes I did it all with adoration While you killed it off with all of your holy mess What now? What now? What now? What now? Sufjan S tevens: drums and percussion, Prophet 08, Prophet X, piano, vocals
15.
12:29

credits

released September 25, 2020

All songs performed, recorded, engineered, arranged, mixed and produced by Sufjan Stevens, with additional contributions (*) recorded and engineered by James McAlister and Casey Foubert at their respective home studios. Contributions by Emil Nikolaisen were recorded at Malabar in Oslo, Norway, engineered by himself. Mastered by TW Walsh. All original album art, layout, design and typography by Sufjan Stevens. © 2020 AKR PO Box 1282, Lander, WY 82520 USA.

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Sufjan Stevens New York, New York

Sufjan Stevens is a singer-songwriter living in New York City.

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