Seven Swans

Release date
22 Aug 2006
Running length
12 tracks
Running time


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    Track     Duration Listeners
1 All the Trees of the Field Will Clap Their Hands 4:13 210,519
2 The Dress Looks Nice on You 2:31 270,928
3 In the Devil's Territory 4:56 163,546
4 To Be Alone With You 2:44 479,395
5 Abraham 2:33 175,224
6 Sister 5:59 152,989
7 Size Too Small 3:04 163,711
8 We Won't Need Legs to Stand 2:12 154,403
9 A Good Man Is Hard to Find 3:15 169,130
10 He Woke Me Up Again 2:42 148,125
11 Seven Swans 6:31 153,359
12 The Transfiguration 5:17 138,951

About this album

Seven Swans is a music album by Sufjan Stevens. It includes songs about Abraham and Christ’s Transfiguration, among many others.

The album is softer and sparser than other albums by Stevens, relying more heavily on his trademark and melodious voice.

Seven Swans was received well by critics. The Guardian called it “a record of remarkable delicacy” and Spin magazine said it sounded “like Elliott Smith after ten years of Sunday school”.

The album was released on compact disc and vinyl LP; the vinyl was released by Burnt Toast Vinyl.

Biblical allusions
Many of the songs on Seven Swans tell stories directly from the Bible.

All the Trees of the Field Will Clap Their Hands is a reference to Isaiah 55:12, where Isaiah says, “You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.”
In the Devil’s Territory is probably a reference to Matthew 4:1, where Jesus spends forty days and forty nights fasting in the desert in order to face the temptation of the devil. The first line of the song references Psalm 46 and possibly the Brian Wilson song Be Still.
To Be Alone With You discusses Christ’s atonement and how it has made him intimately connected with humanity (“You gave your body to the lonely, they took your clothes. You gave up a wife and a family, you gave your goals; to be alone with me…to be alone with me you went up on a tree.”) The beginning could also be a lament of Judas Iscariot; “I’d give my body to be back again, in the rest of the room ,” or Sufjan himself lamenting past sins, comparing himself to Judas.

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  • transparentman

    When you realize the genius, the simple elegance. It's perfect for those late nights, contemplating your attention on the complexities of life, wallowing in one's existence, seeking love, being lost, and finding your way home again.

    4 Aug 2014 Reply
  • jamesusillxd

    Entirely too god-y, but entirely super

    24 Jul 2014 Reply
  • diadasbruxas

    The album art is inspired by Salvador Dalí

    3 May 2014 Reply
  • DrSlump7

    If you were to listen to this album for the first time, you would receive immense amounts of nostalgia. It's almost as if you were transported to a simpler life, a simpler time, a time in which you never lived.

    29 Mar 2014 Reply
  • diism


    24 Mar 2014 Reply
  • Derek-H

    Welp. As a huge fan of Michigan, Illinois, and Adz... I guess it's time for me to bite the bullet and listen to this.

    3 Feb 2014 Reply
  • Blarobbarg

    This album has no comparison. His others are all great or impressive or interesting at least in their own ways... But this. This freaking album. This takes the breath away, and then takes your soul into places you never knew existed. Seriously though. Perfection.

    2 Dec 2013 Reply
  • DrSlump7

    Wow, his best IMO, far superior to Illinois.

    27 Jun 2013 Reply
  • transparentman


    9 Jun 2013 Reply
  • lyrik_raydio

    This album is... beyond words, if any.

    10 Apr 2013 Reply
  • LightsOfBohemia

    This album summarized: "Vade retro Satan! I have an ukelele and I'm not afraid of using it!" lol no seriously, it's really good.

    15 Dec 2012 Reply
  • PlatypusQuest

    His best album. [3]

    1 Nov 2012 Reply
  • ChineseGun

    His best album. [2]

    23 Oct 2012 Reply
  • slaminator212

    Jesus has this on His iPad [2]

    19 Oct 2012 Reply
  • matt1337c

    How beautiful. It's like a complete album of "Casimir Pulaski Day"s.

    8 Jul 2012 Reply
  • puismourir

    better than illinois

    13 May 2012 Reply
  • prominence_la

    Golden album.

    11 May 2012 Reply
  • wi-lll

    What a masterpiece.

    13 Dec 2011 Reply
  • TheHochhaus

    I like seven swans the most on seven swans. the ending is just breathtaking. he played it as opener in berlin, it was unbelievably great!

    6 Oct 2011 Reply
  • Neon_Spadezzz

    Like every song except for 'Seven Swans.' I must be pathetic. The album is really good, though, nevertheless. Maybe that song has to catch my attention after a few listens.

    11 Aug 2011 Reply
  • All 97 shouts

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