LISTEN: Avicii’s First Posthumous Single, ‘SOS’, Is Out Now And It’s A Slapper

Rich Polk/Getty Images for Rolling Stone

The first song from Avicii’s forthcoming posthumous album has been released Wednesday nearly one year after the musician’s death and within an couple hours of posting, it has over a quarter of a million views of YouTube due to its authentically Avicii sound.

The two-and-a-half minute song features vocals from American soul signer Aloe Blacc, the same dude who did vocals for the summer anthem of 2013, Wake Me Up, which was the the first dance/electronic song to sell over 4 million copies in the U.S. and peaked at number one on the charts in 22 countries.

In personal notes discovered following Avicii’s (born Tim Bergling) death, the Swedish musician had written about wanting to work with Aloe Blacc again, so SOS producers Albin Nedler and Kristoffer Fogelmark invited him to record over the track.

“I feel like ‘SOS’ was a song that was probably ahead of its time for when he wrote it,” Blacc said. He wrote these lyrics obviously about some of his battles, and I think it’s a really important topic to approach and to share, especially with his visibility and his access to ears and hearts: To give people the words to be able to say ’I need help.’” [via Variety]

Producers Nedler and Fogelmark spoke about how they completed the song that remains authentically Avicii,

“Afterwards, finishing them was … I just get paralyzed by talking about it, but everything was about completing Tim’s version,” says Fogelmark.

Through the program Fruity Loops, Nedler and Fogelmark were able to track and preserve Bergling’s keystrokes. “He had a completely different way of playing piano and keyboard,” says Nedler. “As a result his fingers would sometimes strike an unusual key, which added to his unique sound. Tim’s fingerprints are literally across the entirety of ‘SOS.’”

The complete album, titled Tim, is scheduled to be released in June. Just in time to rage this summer.

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Matt’s love of writing was born during a sixth grade assembly when it was announced that his essay titled “Why Drugs Are Bad” had taken first prize in D.A.R.E.’s grade-wide contest. The anti-drug people gave him a $50 savings bond for his brave contribution to crime-fighting, and upon the bond’s maturity 10 years later, he used it to buy his very first bag of marijuana.