Listen: Sufjan Stevens – A Little Lost

Yep, he's covering Arthur Russell...

An artist cruelly neglected in his own lifetime, Arthur Russell's posthumous reputation continues to increase.

The Red Hot Organisation have pieced together a new tribute album 'Master Mix: Red Hot + Arthur Russell' which will be released in October via Yep Roc.

A plethora of names have become involved, with the likes of Hot Chip, Jose Gonzalez, Devendra Banhart and more taking part.

Sufjan Stevens has covered 'A Little Lost'. Initially an acoustic hymnal dominated by Arthur Russell's wondrously flexible cello, Stevens turns the track on its head presenting it as a stubbornly funky electronic piece.

The softness, tenderness of the vocal remains, though. Sufjan Stevens explains his choice:

I like “A Little Lost” because it’s all about kissing. I love kissing. If I could kiss all day, I would. I can’t stop thinking about kissing. I like kissing more than sex because there’s no end to it. You can kiss forever. You can kiss yourself into oblivion. You can kiss all over the body. You can kiss yourself to sleep. And when you wake up, you can’t stop thinking about kissing. Dammit, I can’t get anything done because I’m so busy thinking about kissing. Kissing is madness! But it’s absolute paradise, if you can find a good kisser.

Arthur’s music is all over the place, but most of it seems to be about embracing darkness (loneliness) and ambiguity (confusion) with the biggest bear hug in the world. Catharsis! He didn’t give a shit about fads or fashion even as he was influenced by popular music, club music, and all that shitty art music at the Kitchen. He kind of cobbled it all together to create his own diverse musical language, He was funny as shit (a wordsmith, a master of the innuendo), but also dead serious (and blunt) about the deepness of his feelings, unafraid to express affection in his songs, without pandering or cliche. Arthur was real as shit. You can’t fake realness.

Check it out below – then catch the original after the jump. (via Pitchfork)

Buy Clash Magazine

Get Clash on your mobile, for free: iPhone / Android

-
Join the Clash mailing list for up to the minute music, fashion and film news.