I think it’s safe to say Sufjan Stevens likes Christmas. A lot. But if you’re anything like me, you probably think mentioning the word ‘Christmas’ before mid-November is premature and over enthusiastic. Well, this year I am happy to screw up that little rule and throw it on the log fire, because if there’s an occasion that spells the beginning of the festive season, it’s surely the release of a Sufjan Stevens Christmas album. As the snow was falling at the end of 2006, Stevens released a boxed set of festive tracks, and this year he’s doing it again. Consisting of various festive EPs recorded over the course of 2006-2010, Silver & Gold: Songs for Christmas Vols. 6-10 will be released on Asthmatic Kitty on 13 November as a 5 disc boxed set (CD/LP/Download). The album includes 18 new Sufjan Stevens songs especially recorded for the release as well as covers of various Christmas standards including ‘Sleigh Ride‘ and ‘I’ll Be Home For Christmas‘. The album comes with enough extras to burst your stocking wide open. These include a set of Christmas stickers, temporary tattoos, self-assemble festive paper ornament, lyric sheet and guitar tabs, some hallucinogenic photographs, extensive liner notes by Sufjan Stevens… and what festive package would be complete without an apocalyptic pull-out poster? In short, Silver & Gold: Songs for Christmas Vols. 6-10 contains everything you’ll need to pack the holiday period to the rafters with Sufjan style jingle bells and joy. Normal cynicism will be resumed next year, but for now, it’s time to get festive!
Listen to ‘Christmas Unicorn’ from ‘Silver & Gold…‘ below. You can even download it for keeps if you like. Just call it an early Christmas present.