I’m not afraid of you now

January 9th, 2007

I forgot to mention last night that Darnielle was playing a Maton. It looked new, too. The last couple of times I’ve seen him he was playing a Takamine, so maybe he picked this guitar up since he arrived?

Nice to know he’s appreciating the local goods.

Thing about coming home sick early from work and getting 2 hours sleep is it leads you to being wide awake at midnight. I just have no amount of sleepy right now.

I’ve listened to the song Pittsfield by Sufjan Stevens roughly 2932171 today. I have no idea why it’s hit me as hard as it has – from first listen I was hooked but today I can’t really put it down. From the point where he sings ‘Stand there, tell me that I’m of no use’ through to ‘I don’t regret having left the place in a mess’ I involuntarily hold my breath, like I don’t want to miss a note or a nuance. The lyrics are fairly direct RE: their subject, but I think it’s something more subtle that grabs me from the inside. The song is so pretty to listen to and rises to an orchestral crash at the end. He does that so well.

He also has such a young naivety to his voice; particularly in this song. There is so much that parents tell you as a child that, when you step over that invisible line and become an adult, you begin to see right through. It’s enlightening, sure, and to a point empowering, but it’s also disappointing. At some point you realize everything you held close to you as trustworthy and true really isn’t really as it seems. It’s at that point you begin to question everything about you and you loose that kid in you that will believe someone when they tell you thunder is the clouds banging together or if you swallow watermelon seeds a vine will grow in your stomach.

Also, there’s the point where you realize your parents really only have as much control over your life as you let them. I remember pretty much exactly when I realized this, but I guess some people never really get there.

Anyway, that got away from me. The Avalanche is a beautiful album. I hope like hell he tours soon – he is one musician I would do most anything to see this year.


4 Responses to “I’m not afraid of you now”

  1. wayne on January 10, 2007 6:55 am

    I love Pittsfield too, his christmas EP’s are excellent as well. I agree I hope he tours here soon, I believe his shows are quite a production.

  2. Karen on January 10, 2007 9:18 pm

    Yeah I’ve heard that! I’ve read that he uses orchestras and all sorts of stranges things to make sound. Regardless of how amazing the music is, he’s such a great lyricist :) It would make my year if he toured.

  3. Gravity is nothing to me · Song 3 - We swaggered and swayed on February 10, 2007 11:12 pm

    [...] Sufjan Stevens honestly writes about childhood, its effect on adult demons, and general human interaction better than anyone else I know (another example is Pittsfield from the album The Avalanche, which I’ve already written about). He does it with such a sweetness and generosity and you get the feeling that every lyric is so personal to him. He is not trying to drive a message or create a catchy lyrical hook or even (though he sometimes hits the mark) write poetry. He’s just telling a story, and a very personal story at that. He’s trying to explain his view of the world and the view of the people in his world. It sucks me in every time. [...]

  4. This song at Gravity is nothing to me on December 18, 2007 11:53 pm

    [...] already written about this song here. And I reread it just now, and for once I don’t hate what I wrote. So you’re not getting [...]

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