By Ian GormelySufjan Stevens's Axl Rose-like recording pace is enough to get even casual fans wondering if the guy's got another record in him following the triumph of 2005's Illinois. In the five year's since its release, he's managed to produce an outtakes disc, an album of Christmas tunes and even a tribute to the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway. But he also admitted his 50 State project was just a promotional gimmick. And despite sneaking some new tracks into set lists last fall, in November he told Exclaim! that "I don't really have as much faith in my work as I used to," leaving a proper follow-up looking ever more doubtful.
Well, good news, kids: according to the National's Bryce Dessner, Stevens is indeed hard at work on a new album and is currently recording in the band's Brooklyn studio.
"We've played on some of the tracks and been listening to some of the stuff as he's been working on it," Dessner told Exclaim! in a recent interview.
Dessner, who described Stevens as "very solitary in what he does" and "one of my closest friends" didn't want to reveal too much about the new as-yet-untitled Stevens album. But when asked if the new material sounded like Stevens's older records, Dessner offered a resounding "no."
"It's going to be incredible," he adds. "It's going to probably blow people's minds."
Consider yourselves warned.
The National are currently on tour across North America, and you can view all their dates here.
To read Exclaim!'s entire National interview, click here.