Javelin marks Sufjan’s first solo album of songs since The Ascension, and his first in full singer-songwriter mode since Carrie & Lowell. At times, Javelin has the feel of a big team album production — but it is decidedly not: almost every sound here is the result of Sufjan writing and recording at home, building by himself what sometimes feels like a testament to ‘70s Los Angeles studio opulence. The contributions come from a close circle of friends – adrienne maree brown, Hannah Cohen, Pauline Delassus, Megan Lui and Nedelle Torrisi – who provide harmonies on many songs, and Bryce Dessner, who plays acoustic and electric guitar on “Shit Talk.”
Includes a 48-page book of art and essays all created by Sufjan, including a series of collages, cut-up catalog fantasies, puff-paint word clouds, and color fields.
Each track on Javelin starts intimately: the trickle of an acoustic guitar, the patter of a lidded piano, and the cascade of a coruscant arpeggio.