Sufjan, if you ever read this, I’m ready for another solo album from you.Â Enjoy Your Rabbit seems to be the most overlooked in Stevens’ canon, in all of the online discussions and real life discussions I’ve been a part of. I guess the fact that it is isn’t too farfetched –Â Enjoy Your RabbitÂ is probably the most atypical work Sufjan’s released under his solo guise. He whips out the electronic arsenal in full force, using the Chinese Zodiac calendar as his muse, and then lays off the trigger on the album’s closing track (and possibly my favorite track of his) “Year of Our Lord” – Sufjan knits a snuggly yakÂ blanketÂ of ambient bliss. It’s hard to believe that this album is thirteen years old, or that Sufjan’s been around that long. Whoever wrote the synopsis on Asthmatic Kitty (I have a feeling it’s Sufjan, going off of the last paragraph) is wrong about him going downhill ever since.
Regarding the LPs, you can get one of four possible colors for the first disc – translucent red, blue, green or white. The second disc is clear. Quantity isn’t specified, and I’m not sure how fast this will sell out. Sufjan’s got quite the following, but this album seems to be skimmed over a lot – I guess we’ll see how this plays out. Check out Enjoy Your Rabbit on the Spotify player below and see what you think of it. Cheers!
Departing from the singer-songwriter format of his first Asthmatic Kitty album, A Sun Came, this collection of fourteen colorful instrumental compositions combines Sufjan's noted gift for melody with electronic sounds to create an unusually playful and human- not to mention humane- electronic experience.
Enjoy Your Rabbit is the most underrated and overlooked album in Sufjan's discography. It contains in capsule form what he would later unpack into more palatable music. There are flashes of Michigan and Illinois in "Year of Our Lord," "Year of the Ox," and "Year of the Dog," and shadows of Age of Adz in the darkest moments of "Year of the Boar," "Year of the Snake," or "Year of the Dragon."
EYR is a harbinger. A precursor. A wink in the eye before the slight. You should have listened in the first place. We'll forgive you though, because when an album is only available in wasteful jewelcase CD, how cool can it be? Jewelcases are so 1998.But now that it's in multi-colored limited-edition gimmick-ridden vinyl, you have no excuse. EYR, which Sufjan wrote and recorded in the innocence of a pre-9/11 2001, is Sufjan's best work because it is Sufjan at his least self-aware.
In an alternate reality, Sufjan never made Michigan or Seven Swans or Illinois; he kept making electronic freakout albums like EYR in obscurity, until perhaps he just gave up and stayed in graphic design and some pitying, barely afloat label re-released EYR and sold a few dozen copies to a few scattered part-time record store employees. But here we are in this reality, where Michigan is slated for an energy drink commercial, Illinois is a backdrop to a pensive montage in a kickstarted blockbuster movie, and EYR is relegated to a drunken purchase at Amazon.com.
Here at AKR, where we often ignore reality as it's presented, EYR is one of our most played records. We find ourselves in the small company of ballet choreographers, quartets, and occasional internet reviewers, but there should be more of us. So, as if we were in that alternate universe where "Sufjan" is more likely the name of a Game of Thrones character than an indie star, we hope you'll give this record a chance now that it's available as vinyl. It is just as genius as anything Sufjan has released since. Everything's been downhill since.
Listen on Spotify
- Maybe Buy
- Not My Style
- Too Expensive