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Boomkat Product Review:
Does the world really need another Sufjan Stevens album? It seems the last three he released topped critics 'end of year' lists - surely he can't keep it up, surely he's got to release a stinker soon? What's more, 'The Avalanche' isn't even an album proper, it's an odds and sods compilation, outtakes and extras taken from his classic 'Illinois' album. Gawd, why the hell should we care then? Well for a start, Sufjan's outtakes are better than a majority of most bands finished product, there are 21 tracks on this gigantic compilation and not a dull moment... so I'm left wondering how the man can be so productive. Of course 'The Avalanche' doesn't reach the dizzy heights of it's predecessors, but then that was never the point, this isn't a 'proper' album and in light of this you can forgive it's excesses (three versions of Chicago??). With tracks as good as the heart-stopping opener, 'The Avalanche' and the singalong 'Adlai Stevenson' you can't fault the happy clappy fellow - he's got something of the Pied Piper about him, the songs make you want to follow him wherever he goes wherever that might take you. I think it's almost music-critic law to mention that Stevens plans to write an album for every state in America... at this rate he could slim his albums down to 40 minutes and get 4 out a year! Here's to the next state. Lovely.