There’s still time to nominate local icons for Best of D.C.
Last year, Sufjan Stevens released the beautiful and mournful album Michigan. According to the Brooklyn-based singer-songwriter, it’s the first in a planned project to make a record for each state. What is being demonstrated here is something that music hasn’t seen since Brian Wilson last donned his fire hat and farted in his sandbox: ambition. Stevens played more than 15 instruments on Michigan: piano, horn, banjo, vibraphone—and then there were the harmonies that fell through the mix like petals. He did it all without crossing the line into precious, without sounding like anything out of the orch-pop canon, and without going all mathy, causing nerds the world over to be taken off guard by one of their own. This year, Stevens released Seven Swans, a sparse compendium of songs left off of Michigan, and in ’05, he’s tackling another state. Just to make you feel even more like a sloth, his label’s press sheet adds that he can cut hair, install drywall, and make a “legendary” omelet. Bring a skillet when he plays with Nicolai Dunger and Awry at 8:30 p.m. on the Black Cat’s Mainstage, 1811 14th St. NW. $10. (202) 667-7960. (Jason Cherkis)