Sufjan Stevens - Avalanche
Initially conceived as part of a double album version of 'Illinois', Avalanche instead became a “companion” (a polite word for “b-sides”) to 'Illinois'. Since its release, fans have had mixed reactions. “3 versions of Chicago?!?! Enough already,” wrote ‘biografiend” on Sputnik. But “cravenmonket,” who gave the album 4.5 stars on rateyourmusic, suggests that we all “stop thinking of The Avalanche as more 'Illinois'. It actually owes more to 'Michigan'.” Cravenmonket may be right. Take “The Mistress Witch” or “Saul Bellow,” both of which could have lived on the 2003 Michigan as much as on 'Illinois'. One can hear Sufjan’s 2004 Enjoy Your Rabbit in “The Undivided Self.” And the band jam on “Springfield” looks forward to 2010’s All Delighted People. Then there’s “Pittsfield,” which, at least lyrically, foreshadows the more personal themes of 2015’s Carrie & Lowell.
All that to say, a vinyl release of 'Avalanche' is long overdue. With gratitude, we happily present Avalanche as a 2xLP a mere twelve years after its release, complete with all 21 songs from the original release, including the three versions of “Chicago” (you’re welcome, biografiend).