Beck Teams With Pharrell For Folk Funk Banger 'Saw Lightning': Listen

Lauren Dukoff

Talk about two great tastes that go great together. Beck dropped a new single on Monday morning (April 15), "Saw Lighting," an acoustic funk banger that marks the alt-rock icon's first-ever collaboration with pop superproducer (and part-time pop star) Pharrell.

The four-minute headtrip is a perfect blend of Beck's signature magnetic poetry lyrics, acoustic guitar and lonesome harmonica and Pharrell's banging beats and catchy vocalizations. The track was written and produced by the dynamic duo and it's slated to appear on Beck's upcoming 14th studio album, Hyperspace, whose release date has not yet been announced by Capitol Records.

The song opens with some blues wailing and strummed acoustic guitar, quickly joined by a signature skittery Pharrell beat and Beck singing, "There was a day/ Saw lightning/ There was a day/ Saw lightning/ Hey, hey, hey, saw lightning/ Ho, ho, ho saw lightning."

The track, about sprinting from an unseen peril, explodes into a full-on dance jam less than a minute in, with a throbbing, tick-tocky beat and an ad-lib section of "mumbles" -- credited to Pharrell, who also plays drums and keyboards on the track. The production mashes up early, experimental acoustic breakbeat Beck with the sound of his more recent pop-oriented singles, "Wow" and "Up All Night" from 2017's Grammy-winning Colors album.

"Lightning" is available for download here now, and is the soundtrack to the new Beats by Dr. Dre Powerbeats Pro campaign shot by Guava Island director Hiro Murai. The song is the latest sneak release  from Beck, who recently guested on "Night Running," a single from his upcoming tour mates Cage the Elephant, as well as "Super Cool" from the LEGO Movie 2.

Listen to "Saw Lightning" below.


The Biz premium subscriber content has moved to

To simplify subscriber access, we have temporarily disabled the password requirement.