For whatever reason I wasn’t anticipating this collaboration to be something so grand and exciting, but after seeing fan videos and listening to bootleg recordings from the the song cycle, I promptly rethought that misconception.
The trio (backed by drummer James McAlister, the Navarra String Quartet, and the New Trombone Collective which consistes of 7 trombones!) has created this song cycle with a song for each planet. My favorites are Jupiter, Mercury, and Saturn. The songs are sort of similar to that of Sufjan’s last album Age of Adz in theme, but a bit less electronic and more orchestra heavy. Lately Sufjan has been on the biggest autotune/vocoder kick known to indie music, so be prepared for autotune if you listen. Some people seem to have complaints about the use of autotune in these pieces, but really, a song cycle about outer space warrants a bit of autotune in my opinion.
The Fuck Yeah Sufjan Stevens tumblr put up a bootleg of one of the performances of the song cycle last night and I’ve been listening to it all day…the sound quality is actually pretty decent. As of right now there hasn’t been any info about an official recording or release of this collaboration, so for a while these recordings will have to do.