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Sufjan Stevens & Angelo De Augustine, 'Reach Out'

"Reach Out" is one of the first releases from the new collaboration between Sufjan Stevens and Angelo De Augustine, A Beginner's Mind. The song is loosely based on the 1987 German fantasy-meets-romance film Wings of Desire, where angels listen to the thoughts of Berliners. One angel strays and becomes mortal to experience the sensation of being a human: feeling, touching, loving rather than simply spectating.

"Reach Out" echoes these themes of isolation and mortality, epitomized by lyrics like, "I would rather be the flower than the ocean," and shortly after, "I would rather be devoured than be broken." And in the most Sufjan Stevens way, he and De Augustine's delicate vocals and instrumentals make these enormous themes feel floral and approachable.

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Sofie Hernandez-Simeonidis is a production assistant on the NPR Music team.