WATCH: Sufjan Stevens and Gallant Duet on “Blue Bucket of Gold” for “In the Room”

Spotify's new live performance series brings together the recent tourmates for a take on the Carrie & Lowell closer.

By now you’ve probably seen the footage of Sufjan Stevens and R&B singer Gallant covering Drake’s “Hotline Bling.” And you might have had a laugh, or you might have sat down and thought about the incongruity of 2015’s most meme-worthy song and the stark realities of Sufjan’s Carrie & Lowell. It’s a strange cover; Gallant’s dextrous pipes aren’t really built for the song’s lackadaisical swagger, and Sufjan—well, nobody’s expecting to see him pop up on Dirty Sprite 3 or anything.

Anyway, it turns out that what we should’ve been thinking of is what it would be like to hear these two come together on one of Sufjan’s own songs. The pair recently put together a version of Carrie & Lowell‘s gutwrenching closer “Blue Bucket of Gold.” The video, which was shot and performed in a single live take for Spotify’s In The Room sessions, finds Gallant taking the lead vocal. While Sufjan’s take on the album is pained, hopeful in a cosmic sense but resigned to suffering in this life, Gallant delivers an impassioned protest. In his hands, “Blue Bucket of Gold” is issued from the moment before death, when hope for full reconciliation is still alive—but fading. You can watch it below.

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