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Michigan

Michigan

July 1, 2003

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Product Details

  • Original Release Date: July 1, 2003
  • Label: Asthmatic Kitty
  • Copyright: 2003 Asthmatic Kitty
  • Total Length: 1:06:09
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B000S59RQK
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (107 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #29,622 Paid in Albums (See Top 100 Paid in Albums)

Customer Reviews

It was one of the greatest songs I had heard in a long time.
Patrick
This would be good for newer fans as well; it's a good album to get acquainted with his sound and discover why so many love his music.
BigJohnson
Beautiful life-altering lyrics, glorious melodies, and musical talent that is almost frightening- that is the essence of this album.
N. Rogers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

62 of 66 people found the following review helpful By M. Gaines VINE VOICE on March 4, 2004
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Independent music is a hit and miss thing with most musical
enthusiasts. With the bulk of information primarly exchanged by word of mouth or read in 'off the beaten path' music mags most stumble upon wonderful works of art that scream for wider attention from the musical community at large.
I've discovered some amazingly artistically creative souls struggling in the abis, crying out to be heard.

I must say that Sufjan Stevens offering "Greetings From Michigan"
leaves me dumbfounded in the brillance behind this 2003offering.
Sufjan reflects so many influences it's blindingly stunning in its execution and brilliance. From the Band, Beach Boys, Neil Young, to contemporary currents of Bright Eyes, Elliott Smith, Belle and Sebastion, this guy is a master in the studio. Not only in reflecting musical ingenuity but in the lyrical scope of the entire project.
What I can't seem to understand is why no one in the musical world at large has picked up on this guy, beside pitchfork media. has me baffled.
His themes on this masterpiece run into the territory of Springsteen's to quote pitchfork "The record is stacked with impressive space for Stevens' shimmering geography, and it manages a melancholy beauty; Michigan is a frost-bound tone poem in which average people live out their victories and defeats with a shadowy, dignified grace." From the opening track of "Flint (For The Unemployed And Underpaid)" to the final cut " Vito's Ordination Song " this is a major work by an artist who should be selling millions of records, (if there truly was
any justice in this world).
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92 of 101 people found the following review helpful By Juan Mobili on May 30, 2004
Format: Audio CD
This is a stunning album which, in different ways on this page, has already been pretty well documented. It is wonderful, promising, and somewhat ironic that a number of the best recordings of recent date have been made by young musicians and composers, both women and men -in addition to Stevens, Laura Veirs, Vetiver, Devendra Barnhart ... the list could go on!- mostly in their own bedrooms, on a shoe-string budget and not having to count, in most cases, on big name producers nor virtuoso session players.
What can you expect from this album? Some of the most beautiful, open-hearted and downright honest music being made today.
You, like me no doubt, will soon acknowledge favorites among these songs, yet because it is meant to be a suite about the, at times beleaguered, state of Michigan, it ought to be appreciated as a whole as it was intended by Sufjan Stevens; and, because I would not want to taint your listening experience with my preferences.
If you can afford it, buy it -and buy it new- so this guy gets some money for this gift of an album. If you must borrow music, try Sting or Madonna ... I'm sure they can manage on their savings.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By timmy on August 10, 2003
Format: Audio CD
The extremely intelligent, multi-talented, incredibly hot Sufjan Stevens never ceases to amaze. His first album, A Sun Came, was a fun, emotional, and experimental (in the best sense of the word) album, while Enjoy Your Rabbit proved he had more under his sleeves than folky guitar songs and could groove out like the best of them (which isn't much these days).
Now here comes Greetings From Michigan, where Stevens returns to his roots a bit. Scratch that. His roots are planted in creativity, and he has always stayed in that soil. What I mean is that Michigan is a lot closer to A Sun Came, yet is an album of its own style and complexity. This is almost like a perfected A Sun Came, for those who found the noiser moments in his debut too unlistenable (for those, like me, who found them part of the album's personality, be thankful that Stevens is open-minded enough to satisfy both sides).
How do I describe Michigan? To merely say "folk" would be an injustice; to say "hardcore" would be right in spirit, but probably not soul; and you're not going to catch me saying "pop" or "light rock." Simply put, Sufjan Stevens has a mind of his own. He is pure, honest, and sincere. Untouched by the egoistic pollution of the indie world that usually poisons artists of his status, all Stevens wants to do is create timeless music.
Now, about the album. We open with "Flint," a quiet piano ballad which leads into the brighter, happier "All Good Naysayers," a jubilant track that sets the tone for most of the album. Not to say Stevens writes all happy songs, but even in his most melancholy numbers I can't help but smile. Maybe it's the realization of his genius in crafting melodies, no matter what the tone may be.
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful By A. Patel on January 10, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Considering this is the best (and maybe only) CD dedicated exclusively to Michigan, it was very difficult to actually find here, so thank you Amazon.
Michigan born and bred, Brooklyn based, Sufjan Stevens has already demonstrated a range and talent that ranks him in the "genius" category. As a native Michigander, I cannot overstate how well he has captured the both joys and sorrows of life throughout our dear state, but with candor and grace, not melodrama and hyperbole.
His excoriation of Motown's largely self-inflicted slide in recent decades is nonetheless accompanied by an invocation of hope for the future ("Detroit, Lift Up Your Weary Head!..."). And "Flint" would make Michael Moore both proud and melancholy indeed (I hope Moore has purchased this CD!). But they are genuinely American stories that could easily be applied to most any state (except maybe Hawaii!).
To me, this release has shades of Nick Drake ("Holland", "Romulus"), Vince Guaraldi Trio ("All Good Naysayerrs..."), Sea & Cake, and even a little Mogwai. The repetition of certain patterns and layers in tracks like "Detroit..." throws off a nice Philip Glass (circa Koyaanisqatsi) vibe.
This release ranks alongside Sun Kil Moon's "Ghosts of the Great Highway" and Pernice Brothers' 'Yours, Mine and Ours' as the best of 2003.
Download all the Creed you want, but support these artists! :)
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