Song of the Day: Sufjan Stevens – Heirloom

Sufjan Stevens at KEXP 500 Club show at Triple Door 7/23/05
photo by Mike Baehr

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and independent recordings from artists that our DJs think you should hear. Each and every Friday we offer songs by local artists. Today‚Äôs selection, featured on the Afternoon Show with Kevin Cole, is “Heirloom” by Sufjan Stevens from his 2010 EP All Delighted People on Asthmatic Kitty.

Sufjan Stevens – Heirloom (MP3)

Since the rather successful LP Illinoise in 2005, Sufjan Stevens has thrown out a few musical bones, among them a Christmas album, compilations, and some appearances on albums from other artists, but nothing so complete as the recently released 8-song, 60 minute All Delighted People EP from Astmatic Kitty. Less of a prologue to the upcoming Age of Adz, than a musical purge of the things he’s been working on in the last five years. Among the indulgently long and diverse tracks is “Heirloom,” a short and simple gem heavily seeped with folk picking, and a quasi bohemian air. It’s haunting how the song lingers, as unassuming as the lyrics suggest, “I never meant to be a pest to anyone this time, I only meant to be a friend to everyone this time,” the rolling banjo melody will become your internal soundtrack. Although with such a beautiful song, how could you protest?

Sufjan Stevens is currently on tour, and you can find all the details here. It will be a month until he performs in Seattle, but in the meantime enjoy this video of Sufjan Stevens playing “The Lakes of Canada” for the fantastic La Blogotheque during the 2007 MusicNOW Festival in Cincinnati:

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