Sufjan StevensĀ w/ Helado Negro
Paramount Theatre, Seattle, WA

A languid world, filled with magical light and monumentally heartfelt sound, Sufjan Stevens created one of the most stunning shows in recent memory last week during a two-night stint at the historic Paramount Theatre. Supporting his most recent release Carrie & Lowell, clearly his most emotional and personal album to date, Stevens dove head first into what felt like a massive group catharsis. Literally, grown men crying in their seats.

The stage was backed by a series of video screens perfectly orchestrated with home movies and gorgeous scenery, outtakes of life, with lights sweeping at exactly the right moments and speeds to evoke the pace and lyrics of the songs. The sold out crowd was treated to fully thought out visuals and atmosphere, while the band worked through a two-hour set of both new songs and old favorites. Accompanied by a full band, Stevens himself seemed overtaken by emotion.

With no banter to get in the way, the set was a brilliant display of Stevens’s outsider talent, his melancholy imagination wringing emotion out of the hardest of hearts. As he wove his way through the set, switching instruments with ease, Stevens seemed like a master of all genres. From folksy ballads to electro-tinged pop, it’s hard to find fault with his ways, and for fans of his music, this was clearly a show not to be missed.

Set List
Redford (For Yia-Yia & Pappou)
Death With Dignity
Should Have Known Better
Drawn to the Blood
All of Me Wants All of You
John My Beloved
The Only Thing
Fourth of July
No Shade in the Shadow of the Cross
Carrie & Lowell
The Owl and the Tanager
In the Devil’s Territory
For the Widows in Paradise, For the Fatherless in Ypsilanti
The Dress Looks Nice on You
Futile Devices
The Predatory Wasp of the Palisades Is Out to Get Us!
Blue Bucket of Gold
Concerning the UFO Sighting Near Highland, Illinois
Casimir Pulaski Day

Review by Stephanie Dore
Photos by Sunny Martini

Sufjan Stevens






061015_sufjanstevens_02Helado Negro