17 Songs, 1 Hour 15 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Leave it to someone as ambitious as Sufjan Stevens—who once pledged to write an album for every U.S. state—to help dream up a song cycle about the cosmos. Starting life as a commissioned work by the composer Nico Muhly, Planetarium pairs Muhly and Stevens with National guitarist Bryce Dessner and percussionist James McAllister for a restless, eclectic set that weaves from Auto-Tuned R&B and trombone chorales (“Mars”) to sparkling washes of ambience (“In the Beginning”) and wide-eyed EDM (“Saturn”). It’s an indie-world take on the wonders of '70s prog.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Leave it to someone as ambitious as Sufjan Stevens—who once pledged to write an album for every U.S. state—to help dream up a song cycle about the cosmos. Starting life as a commissioned work by the composer Nico Muhly, Planetarium pairs Muhly and Stevens with National guitarist Bryce Dessner and percussionist James McAllister for a restless, eclectic set that weaves from Auto-Tuned R&B and trombone chorales (“Mars”) to sparkling washes of ambience (“In the Beginning”) and wide-eyed EDM (“Saturn”). It’s an indie-world take on the wonders of '70s prog.

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