Albums to watch

The BQE

Sufjan Stevens

The BQE

Another symphonic outing for the maverick US singer-songwriter and composer, this time in tribute to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway

ADM rating[?]

6.9

Label
Rough Trade
UK Release date
20/10/2009
  1. 9.0 |   NME

    Complex and artful, there’s no need to understand fugues and canons to appreciate this – its utter perfection and joy is self-evident
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  2. 9.0 |   PopMatters

    It is at times derivative, but it is overall a transcendent work by one of the most promising musician-artists in the contemporary scene
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  3. 8.0 |   Mojo

    Print edition only

  4. 8.0 |   The Independent

    A typically idiosyncratic endeavour from America's most intriguing young composer.
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  5. 7.4 |   Pitchfork

    The BQE is probably best classified as an unusually successful vanity project, as well as evidence of Stevens' restless creativity
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  6. 7.0 |   Independent on Sunday

    Essentially, it sounds like Illinois, but without the singing. Which is no bad thing. Is Stevens the alt.Gershwin? The evidence in favour is mounting
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  7. 7.0 |   Drowned In Sound

    It’s good, then. Great, in places. As far as curios go, The BQE comprises 40 minutes of transportive, exquisitely played instrumentation, testament to Stevens’ perennially curious nature
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  8. 7.0 |   Blurt

    ...the piece works best as audio accompaniment rather than a stand-alone experience, unless, of course, psychedelic additives are employed to enhance the encounter
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  9. 6.0 |   Q

    Print edition only

  10. 6.0 |   The Quietus

    Perhaps the next State-themed album will allow Stevens' lyricsm to create a broader, more vivid guide to place. For now, The BQE merely - and perhaps aptly - merely feels like part of a journey to somewhere else
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  11. 6.0 |   Under The Radar

    ...has all the hallmarks of Stevens: playful woodwinds sneaking through dancing horns, cataclysmic percussion, sweeping narrative
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  12. 6.0 |   The Irish Times

    There are enough bright and playful sounds here to reward a brief spin down this expressway.
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  13. 6.0 |   Observer Music Monthly

    ...the proposition that classical might be the new pop seems to be giving us an improbably good run for our money this year
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  14. 6.0 |   Uncut

    In isolation from the film it accompanies, the score is beautiful, maddening, headache-inducing and slightly bonkers
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Sufjan Stevens: The BQE

  • Download full album for just £8.49
  • 1. Prelude on the Esplanade £0.89
  • 2. Introductory Fanfare for the Hooper Heroes £0.89
  • 3. Movement I - In the Countenance of Kings £0.89
  • 4. Movement II - Sleeping Invader £0.89
  • 5. Interlude I - Dream Sequence in Subi Circumnavigation £0.89
  • 6. Movement III - Linear Tableau with Intersecting Surprise £0.89
  • 7. Movement IV - Traffic Shock £0.89
  • 8. Movement V - Self-Organizing Emergent Patterns £0.89
  • 9. Interlude II - Subi Power Waltz £0.89
  • 10. Interlude III - Invisible Accidents £0.89
  • 11. Movement VI - Isorhythmic Night Dance with Interchanges £0.89
  • 12. Movement VII (Finale) - The Emperor of Centrifuge £0.89
  • 13. Postlude - Critical Mass £0.89
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