It's fair to say that Sufjan Stevens is an interesting fellow - something which we should all be eternally grateful for, after all, it's better than being an incomprehensible dullard with a guitar and a backing band, no?
What's he gone and done now, though? No, he's not made another album dedicated and based around an American state OR made an album about Chinese animals of the Zodiac (tick). Oh no! This time he's had somewhat of an existential crisis during an interview, questioning the point of pretty much everything.
It was in an interview with Exclaim! Magazine that the outpourings started to flow.
"I definitely feel like “What is the point? What’s the point of making music anymore?” I feel that the album no longer has a stronghold or has any real bearing anymore. The physical format itself is obsolete; the CD is obsolete and the LP is kinda nostalgic. So, I think the album is suffering and that’s how I’ve always created — I work with these conceptual albums in the long-form. And I’m wondering, what’s the value of my work once these forms are obsolete and everyone’s just downloading music?"
Arghhhhh. Don't do this to yourself Sufjan, it's simply not worth the hassle. He added:
"I’m starting to get sick of my conceptual ideas. I’m tired of these grand, epic endeavours and wanting to just make music for the joy of making music and having it be immediate and nothing to do with the industry itself, which, y’know is suffering right now of course."
Stevens then goes on to question the point of the song itself, something pretty startling considering the business he's in. Perhaps less startling, however, than some of his grander efforts.
"I’m wondering what am I doing? What is a song even? I’m questioning, what’s the point of a song? Is a song antiquated? Does it have any power any more? The format itself — a narrative song with accompaniment — is really beyond me now."
He then says he feels that he can't win in the battle of "Sufjan vs. The Music". Of course you can, Sufjan!
So, no more songs? Or will he keep going? Obviously he's been keeping himself busy with all of the BQE stuff, as well as other grand, conceptual pieces. Maybe it's the way he's going to go. Maybe he thinks he'll never top Illinois and, y'know, he may well be right. Chin up, double S.