Sufjan Stevens’ insanely precious and undeniably classic album Illinoise – or Sufjan Stevens Invites You To: Come On Feel The Illinoise – is getting the 10th anniversary reissue treatment early next year. And the singer-songwriter is using the occasion to take a stab at DC Comics.
First, a bit of backstory: Upon its original release in 2005, Illinois had artwork that depicted Superman flying away from a bunch of Illinois iconography as a reference Supes’ home city of Metropolis and its Earth-Prime counterpart, Chicago. DC didn’t like the unauthorized use of Kal-El‘s likeness and issued a cease and desist to Stevens. Stevens covered all the remaining Supes’ copies with a balloon sticker and later runs of the album came with either an empty space or balloons in place of the Man of Steel.
So, the 10th anniversary reissue comes around and who do we find on the updated artwork? Blue Marvel, a recent, Superman-like character from DC’s biggest rival, Marvel. That has to sting.
Stevens’ Asthmatic Kitty Records is pressing 10,000 copies of this “Blue Marvel” edition, with the actual vinyl coming in “Antimatter Blue” and “Cape White.”
Even if his most recent release sounds like it was recorded on high-end equipment in the bedroom of a log cabin, this and Stevens’ cover of “Hotline Bling” prove he does venture out into the world from time to time.