My issue with Stevens is that he tries too damn hard. The album of his I own is 2005’s orgasmically-received Come On Feel the Illinoise!, which was the second entry in his “Fifty State Project,” a plan to write and record an album about each U.S. state. He started with 2003’s Michigan and abandoned the project after Illinois.
Now, I actually think that’s a pretty cool idea, whether he ever actually intended it or not. And I’m not knocking him for his ambition.